Learn how to avoid the shore house and other rental scams already being seen this summer in New Jersey and neighboring states. Cybercriminals will lure people in with affordable rental deals for promising homes, which often they do not own or simply don’t exist. With the Spring of 2020 being practically stolen by COVID-19 and social distancing requirements, scammers know that people are desperate for both time away and cost savings on vacation homes, offering plenty of potential victims.
Fake Online Listings for Rentals
Jersey shore rental scams have operated for years with many different perpetrators and victims, though the general layout of the grift is often the same. The scammer will take the information of an actual home from existing listings, previous listings or just from a general search of potential houses. The scam listing will then be placed on a site such as Craigslist, though AirBnB rentals have started to appear as an easier con vehicle (more on that later).
One unfortunate victim fell for a fairly sophisticated version of this scam that offered a home in Forked River, wherein the scammer used the real owner’s identity and sent realistic-looking documentation to sell the con. In Wildwood, a local realtor stumbled across a former client’s home being rented online in a suspicious-looking listing, and proactively contacted the owner to discover that it was indeed fake. In both of these cases, the scammers had access to just enough information and resources to fool anyone who had only done a cursory search of the property.
Not Limited to Just the Shore – or NJ
Unfortunately, these types of scams can be quite common throughout both the state and the country. In nearby Philadelphia, several would-be renters showed up on the same day to their new apartment – only to discover it was actually an AirBnb rental. The Internet allows for a degree of separation for private listings that scammers can leverage easily, especially during the social distancing requirements of COVID-19.
Avoid Too Good to be True Deals and Check the Details
Avoiding a rental scam is the same as avoiding most over cyber scams, including with phishing emails or domains. If something is too good to be true, it probably is, and no matter how badly you need that discount you should never wire a payment without physical confirmation. The request for wire payment itself is often a good indicator that the list is not legitimate, as wire fraud can be hard to trace before the perpetrators disappears with the money.
Learn How to Protect Yourself from More Cyber Scams
Whether it’s a rental or your business data, scammers are always going to separate you from your money. Stay up to date with ways to spot the latest scams and how to quickly protect yourself from the fallout.
Contact SWK Technologies for more help with avoiding cyber scams.