Owners, avoid rental scam frauds

Some fraud attempts we received.

Scams and fraud attempts we received

Dear vacation rental owners, be aware when you receive a request that does not refer correcly to your accomodation, it's usually the first signal of something worse that will follow: a fraud attempt.

Not all imprecise requests are frauds, but most of the frauds are very imprecise, as an example, they usually refer to booking rooms as if you were a hotel, even if you are advertising an apartment or a cottage.

How it works

The name of this kind of fraud, involving false renters, is known as "419 scam", "nigerian rental scam" or "nigerian advance fee scams". Nigerian because most of the fraud attempts come from people of that country.

Briefly, never, never send back money to people who pay more than due. If it's possible, trace their IP to check it's from where they say they are. The fraud works this way: they will send a cheque or a bank wire paying more than rental price, then they'll ask you to refund the difference. Don't do it! You'll "refund" the difference and after some days the bank will inform you that their cheque was false.

Always report the scam to the e-mail service provider at abuse@scammer-domain-name or use their contact forms. For e-mails from Yahoo users, use their spam report form.

To know more about this kind of fraud, visit 419 Fraud page of UK police and Advance-fee fraud on Wikipedia.

Please note that scammers very often use to fake identity of real people, grabbing names they find on the web. So the real person is never involved in the fraud. While the e-mail address is always the scammer's one, so they can receive your answer. We publish these attempts in order to help other owners avoid frauds.

Some e-mails from scammers

Delivery-date: Sun, 28 Feb 2010 00:11:46 +0100
Received: from n22.bullet.mail.ukl.yahoo.com ([])
	by [omissis]
Date: Sat, 27 Feb 2010 15:11:43 -0800 (PST)
From: George Fredricks <gfredricks@ymail.com>
Subject: Reservation Request

Hello, Mr George Fredricks from London.I need to make reservation in 
your facility for the 10th May - 30th May 2010. The guests are 
journalists who are on tour all around europe and your country is there 
next destination. They need 2 double rooms that can sleep 4 guests. 
Kindly send in your rates in Euro and confirm availability of dates. 

Date:   	 3 Mar 2010 12:42:29 -0000 
Subject:   	 Booking enquiry
From:   	 "tom smith" <tom.smith12@rediffmail.com>
    * from unknown by rediffmail.com via HTTP; 03 Mar 2010 12:42:28 -0000

Kindly confirm availabilty for 2 double or 4 single
rooms, for 4 guests coming on a sponsored holiday trip to your country,
from May 13th to May 21st 2010. Get back to me with total cost for the
period so that our sponsors can forward certified bank cheque to make
Tom Smit 

We replied with a nonsense e-mail and they made the usual fraud, just read below. Never, never trust who send you more money than due.

>Dear Mr Smith,
>I confirm you the availability. Please the sbindola as it would be Antani.
>With a light scappellament to the left. The booking is efroyed for the
>period you required. Total cost is 5600 euro.
>Hope to see you in Svervegia soon.
>Make sure you oblurasky.
>Conte Mascetti

Hello Conte,

Thanks for the prompt reply. Your offer of accommodation @ 5.600,00  is 
accepted and i'll carry on and make payment for the accommodation. 
However, we are embarking on a sponsored holiday trip and the sponsors 
have informed that in line with the company policy, all expenses for the 
trip will be made on one check. 

We made an arrangement with a prepaid transport consultant who will 
handle our pick up/transportation and airline tickets. For reasons of 
our sponsors policy, all expenses for our accommodation, airline tickets 
and transportation will be made on one check only. Therefore, a 
Certified Bank Check of 16.500,00  will be sent to you, that will cover 
our accommodation, pick up/tickets and other services needed. 

I request that when you receive the check, you will cash it and deduct 
the cost of your accommodation 5.600,00  and send the balance, 
10.900,00  to the agent who will arrange for our pick up/tickets and 
other travel requirements. This means i'll entrust the 
airfare/accommodation funds in your care. 

I want you to email your information to me in response to this email 
showing acceptance of this arrangement so that the sponsors can make out 
the check and send it to you via express courier service soonest. The 
requested information is as follows: 

1. The name on which check will be drawn 2. Your contact address. 3. 
Your valid phone number. 

Kindly inform me once you receive the check so that i will instruct you 
on how to forward the balance to the agent so as to enable him complete 
all travel arrangements. 

Best Regards,
Tom Smith

A very similar one has come after some months from IP, that's a Nigeria one, as usual.

Date:   	 Mon, 6 Sep 2010 03:13:37 +0100 [04:13 CEST]
From:  	tom smith <tom.smith4@rediffmail.com>
Received: from User mili [] by skpmoneywise.com with 
NetMail SMTP Agent [...] 

Kindly confirm availability for 2 double or 4 single rooms, for 4 guests 
coming on a sponsored holiday trip to your country, from October 23rd to 
October 31st 2010. Get back to me with actual total cost (including 
taxes) for the period so that we can forward certified bank check or 
credit card details to make payment. 

Tom Smith 

 - E-Mail: collinsbradley71@yahoo.co.uk
 - Country: United Kingdom
 - Telephone No.: +447011136094
 - Date of Arrival: 6th june 2010
 - Date of Departure: 19th june 2010
 - No. Guest: 4
 - Your message: Hello,
We need to book reservation  for rooms in your place for 4 guests
who will be arriving your location on 6 june 2010.
The guests are scheduled to arrive as follows;
Arrival: 6th june 2010
Departure: 19th june 2010

Dates Required: 6th june to 19th june (13 night) No.Of Guests: 4
(four) No.Of Rooms: 2 (two) double rooms or 4 (four) single rooms

If you can take guests for the duration,
Kindly get back to me with the rates and total cost required for the 
duration. A timely response will be appreciated as I look forward to 
hearing from you soon.

Kind Regards,
Engr Collins Bradley

Milenium TRAVELS
143 thurlow park road,
west dulwich,
London,se21 8hy

I am Dr,James Wood from British school of motoring.I want to make 
inquiry of availability for 2 Double/Twin rooms/ your appartment for 4 
guests arriving from England to your country for a research 
programme.Kindly inform me of the rates and the total cost for 4 
delegates with the below booking details. 

Check in date...6th july 2010.
Check out....18th july 2010.
Number of Guests: 4
Names of Guests

1. Dr. James Wood
2. Dr. Chen Hang
3. mr. Inamotor Yan
4. Mr. Malcolm Plummer

Kindly get back to me if you have availability on those dates.Also 
calculate the total cost including all taxes so that we can get our 
sponsors to make a Cheque payment to you for our accommodation. Awaiting 
your urgent response with the total cost. 

Kind Regards,
Dr James wood
40 Miredian Way,
N9 0AS

Dear Sir/Madam,
Could you please confirm availability and total cost for the dates 
stated below for 4 guests for 20 days vacation. 

Arrival Date: 10 th August 2010
Departure Date: 30Th  August 2010
Room Type: 4 Standard single Room   Or  2 Double   Or   2 bedrooms Apartments.
Length of Stay: 20 days
The four guests are all Adults.
Please advise availability. Moreover, what is the TOTAL COST in EURO or 
USD for the entire period including Tax if any. Your prompt response 
will be appreciated. In case the date is not available please get back 
to me with another date.Pls reply to my email: wmrnail@yahoo.co.uk. 


Sincerely yours,
Mr Nail White

Received: from localhost (mailscan.hofmeirmedia.net [])
	by sv05.net-housting.de (Postfix) with ESMTP id 65A422C02782A
X-PHP-Script: web300.sv05.net-housting.de/mailer.php for
From: ONEAL PETER <onealpetertravelagency@ymail.com>

We need to book a prepaid reservation for 2 rooms in your place for 2 
COUPLES who will be arriving your location in 2ND NOVEMBER 2010. The 
COUPLES are scheduled to arrive as follows; 

Arrival: 2ND NOVEMBER 2010
Departure: 12TH NOVEMBER  2010
Dates Required: 2ND NOVEMBER 2010--12TH NOVEMBER  2010 that is for {10 night stay}
No.Of Guests: 2 COUPLES (TWO)

 If you can take the COUPLES for the duration, Kindly get back to me 
with the rates and total cost required for the duration. A timely 
response will be appreciated as I look forward to hearing from you 
soon.Kindly tell me the amount in us dollars or in euro amount 

Kindest Regards,

This scam comes from IP (Nigeria). Date: Wed, 18 Aug 2010 23:28:27 +0000.

Hello Sir/Madam,
My name is [omissis], am Italian,born in the UK, work and reside in the 
UK,i represent the family of Engr and Mrs Alexandra a client with my new 
Travel & Tour Agency. I want to make a reservation on their behalf 
for the following dates. 
October 4th - October 11th 2010
2 double rooms

One room will be or them and the second for their 2 kids, Albert and 
Sandra,aged 18 and 23 respectively. Kindly confirm availability and get 
back to me with the rates in Pounds sterlings. 

A run down of the booking information
Check in: October 4th
Check Out: October 11th
Lenght of stay: 7 Nights
Type of room: Double
Number of rooms:2
Thanks as i expect to hear from you.

This scam came from siemensconcerns@yahoo.com and later from owenhughes47@yahoo.co.uk

Need to make reservation for Two (2) of our technicians
Coming from London for installation of fiber optic cable in one of our sites in your area.

Arrival Date      : 1st April, 2012
Departure Date: 14th April, 2012.

Number of Rooms: 2(Each for single occupancy)
Length of Stay: 14 Nights.(Two weeks)

Get back to me with the TOTAL COST (INCLUDING
APPLICABLE TAXES) if the dates mentioned
Above are free, so that we can confirm reservations
Immediately with a Certified Check.
I hope you accept a Certified Check payment in advance.
Your prompt response
Will be appreciated.

Thanks and have a nice day
Engr Owen Hughes
Mobile: +447035901195
Logistics manager
Siemens communication ltd UK.

August 2012: here is another new fake identity and e-mail address involved in Nigerian scam: Bernita Adone bernitaaadone@gmail.com.