Wednesday, October 10, 2007

New Fraud Detection for your Safety

When a website becomes more popular and draws more traffic it invariably attracts some Internet users with impure intentions. I'm proud to announce that RentLinx has crossed that threshold!

In the last few months a few Internet scam artists have visited RentLinx-powered websites posing as renters! One of the basic scams works like this:

  • A scam artist contacts a property manager posing as a renter.
  • The scam artist says he is moving to the area from overseas and needs to quickly rent a unit.
  • The scam artist graciously offers to send a check (often times for more than the required move-in cost).
  • Once the manager receives the check, the scam artist tells her that he needs furniture delivered to his house, but cannot arrange it from his current location. He asks that she forward some of his check to the furniture company's bank account.
  • Sure enough, his original check bounces, and the furniture company was actually his own personal bank account.

Don't let this happen to you! To help you detect fraudulent leads, RentLinx has implemented a new technique to show you the country of origin of users who contact you. Almost always these scam artists operate from outside of the United States and Canada where there is virtually no risk of being penalized by law enforcement.

Below is an ACTUAL message sent from a scam artist in Nigeria which was appropriately flagged.

Nigerian Rental Scam

Note that the user claims to be from London, but our system shows they are writing from Nigeria (which is a hot bed for Internet fraud).

Remember to always use common sense and never send money AWAY from your account. Hopefully this new fraud detection technique will help.

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