Wednesday, July 29, 2015

A Cautionary Tale

There are so many ways that unscrupulous people try to rip you off. I don't think a week goes by that I don't get one of those emails from a solicitor from some foreign country that is trying to contact me about an inheritance worth millions of dollars. I don't have any relatives in foreign countries worth millions. If so, I'm sure I would have heard about them! Or our family would be contacting them!!!

And then there's the computer hackers that freeze up your internet and list a phone number to call. That's an easy one to fall for. They will take control of your computer and eliminate the bug for several hundred dollars if you just give them your credit card number. They tell you that Apple will charge you much more when, in fact, Apple charges NOTHING for security related issues. I blogged about that awhile back. You can read about it HERE! 

I realize that these scams exist because there are still people who fall for them. I don't know how or who they are, because they seem so sketchy from the start. 

Here's what's happened to me lately. I am the rental agent for the two beach houses that we own and rent out. I received the following request from Warsaw Poland:

Thanks for the updated information. We are okay with the accommodation and date .
We would also like to confirm the reservation on the following information:

Mr. chris Koffie and Mrs Roseann Tremo
45 Woronicza , 
02-625 Warsaw, Poland
tremland@outlook .com

Also , due to the unsecured use of credit card online or on the phone,I have arrange for payment inform of a check (in USD)
Please do forward me the following details for payment


Hope to hear from you soon
Best Regards
Roseann Tremo

Right away, I thought---who would come all the way from Poland to spend 6 days at the beach in Panama City, FL. Still, I sent the contract. All of the information that Roseann requested is in the contract, so I wasn't alarmed to provide that information.

Two days later, I received this email from Roseann:

Good day
I am sorry for all the delay in payment.
There was a mix up in the payment sent to you ,I was supposed to receive two
separate payment one for you and the other for our traveling expenses
but the whole payment was issued on a single one check in your name and
sent .
I tried to correct this but it was in vain as i was ask to
resolve the problem myself. It would have to go through a very long
process to change this error.
Please I don't know what to do. I have been advised to contact you since this check was issued in your name , so you should be able to deposit the check into your account.

As soon as you have the check deposited into your account you are to
deduct your rent and transfer the balance to my agent or to us .
Please do let me know how you can help on this issue.

Now, I am not an idiot. Right away, I recognized this for the scam that it is. My response:

I am sorry, but you are going to have to resolve it on your end. Here in the US, this sort of scenario is a total scam. I cannot be a part of it.
Are you surprised to find that I did not get a response? In hindsight, I wish I had agreed to accept the check. Then when I got it, I could possibly have alerted the authorities. Probably nothing would have happened, but I'd love to be a part of putting these scammers in jail!

Be careful!! Don't trust anything you get via email! It might sound tempting, but don't fall for it!!


  1. ha,ha. I get those too. They have to much time on their hands:) Thanks for stopping by~the row of enamel lids would look nice too:)

  2. Thanks for posting this! I own two condos in Seagrove Beach FL and received this exact email for one of them on 7/30/15. It sounded fishy so before I sent anything to them I searched the web.

  3. It's scary to think they are people out there who fall prey to these type of scams!


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