Tuesday, March 29, 2011

A Warning to Accommodation Providers

It has been brought to our attention that accommodation providers are the unhappy targets of an ongoing scam. The typical pattern of the fraud is that an enquiry is made about renting accommodation. You then request the customary deposit. So far so good; however a communication then follows that a certified cheque has been sent in the post. The cheque, you are told, is for a greater amount than necessary for the deposit. You are asked to refund the excess. The certified cheque when it arrives will fail to clear with your bank. The scam received some national attention recently but we now know it has reached Waterford. Luckily the accommodation provider affected was not caught out as they were aware that such a scam was being operated. In the Waterford case the query arose through an advertisement on an English website. All communication between the parties was by email. The booker claimed to be male. Warning signals in advance of the request for a refund included a request for dates that were clearly booked out on an availability calendar and an oversupply of details- the accommodation was being booked for a honeymoon; it was being paid for by the fraudster’s boss etc. Hopefully this warning will help prevent anyone falling victim to this scheme. If you fear you may have been affected by the scam you should contact your local garda station immediately. Telephone Lismore Garde Station on 058-54222

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