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Anti-Fraud Center

Fraud Prevention
Voyage Rentals wants you to have a safe and enjoyable vacation rental experience. Be advised that we do not process financial transactions. While we do our best to screen our listings, the final responsibility for all financial transactions rests with the renter.

If you have doubts about the legitimacy of a listing . . .

Follow Common Sense Precautions Against CyberFraud

8 Ways to Protect Yourself From Vacation Rental Scams

Be Aware of “Phishing”

Follow These Precautions

If you have doubts about the legitimacy of a listing . . .
Contact us immediately and we will investigate the listing to the best of our ability. If it is not as it purports to be we can and will remove the listing.

Follow Common Sense Precautions Against CyberFraud
The Internet has brought an exciting global marketplace directly to our fingertips, allowing us to shop and make deals at our convenience. Yet before you provide personal information, you must also take steps to make certain your purchase will be safe.

8 Ways to Protect Yourself From Vacation Rental Scams

  • 1. Before paying anything, first check out the property yourself, or ask a local to do it on your behalf. If you can't take those steps, run an online search of its address, as well as of all names, emails and phone numbers of the supposed landlord or agent. Red flags include search results that indicate the property is for sale (and not for rent), a nonexistent address, an address listed for a business or other nonresidential property, and postings by people who fell victim to this particular scammer.

  • 2. Copy and paste into a search engine whole chunks of the ads descriptive text to see whether it's been copied from elsewhere online. If that search reveals a bona fide listing of a for-sale home, that the rental offer may be the work of a scammer.

  • 3. Use an online search engine's map function to get an aerial view of the property. There may also be a street-level photo.

  • 4. Don't rely solely on email correspondence. Many rental scams are carried out by Nigeria-based scammers (so beware of poorly written ads.) You'll want to talk, by phone, with the landlord or listing agent.

  • 5. Never pay upfront for a rental with a wire transfer or prepaid debit card, the preferred methods for scammers. A credit card or PayPal are your safest options. If something goes wrong, you'll have recourse.

  • 6. If dealing with people who say they're the owners, ask for proof of ownership. You can also seek proof of identity, such as a copy of a driver's license, and cross-check that information with the recorder of deeds or assessor's office where the rental is located. For most areas, you can do this online. A finding that a property is in default should give you pause. You can also order detailed reports about landlords and properties atCheckYourLandlord.com.

  • 7. If you're dealing with a manager or agent, ask for proof that the person has a right to sign a lease on behalf of the owner, and check the information with the owner.

  • 8. To verify a real estate agent's credentials, search for the person's name at the Association of Real Estate License Law Officials or contact the licensing office in the agent's state. To find that office, type "(name-of-state) real estate licensing" into a search engine. Keep in mind that scammers may steal the names of legit agents, so make contact by looking up their claimed agency's phone number yourself, rather than using a number the person provides.

Be Aware of “Phishing”
One of more common scams today is "phishing" where fraudulent e-mails and related Web sites are set up in attempt to obtain personal information.   Various efforts are underway to help consumers authenticate the origin of email communication, a currently difficult task.  Microsoft is working on a "caller ID" for e-mail.  Other companies are similarly looking into ways for consumers to determine if e-mail communication is from legitimate sources.
  As always, one alternative for consumers that offers a compromise between convenience and security is off-line security. Here, you can browse Web sites, but complete your transactions off-line by phone, fax or mail.

 

Follow These Precautions

  • Do business with financial institutions and merchants that can demonstrate a track record of reliable satisfied customers.

  • Be suspicious of Web sites that don't allow you to easily verify a company's identity and legitimacy by clearly providing a physical address, telephone number and email address.

  • Never give out your account passwords--even to persons claiming to be from a bank or an on-line service.

  • Carefully check your financial account statements each month for suspicious activity.

  • Keep your browser and computer up-to-date with the latest security software and new patches as they are released.

  • Be very skeptical of offers that sound too good to be true - such as extraordinarily low rental rates, or spectacular properties  are touted as “special deals”.

  • Never make an payment  simply on the basis of chat room hype or a tip from an on-line newsletter.

  • Be very skeptical of unsolicited e-mail based opportunities. Don't send sensitive financial information, such as credit card numbers, via e-mail.

  • If you see something suspicious on the Internet or if you've been victimized by a fraud, immediately contact the local authorities and our customer service team.

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