Tips for Avoiding Internet Scams and Fraud

• When in doubt, check it out! Nearly all scammers we have encountered operate out of foreign countries, claiming to be landlords that are temporarily living outside of North America. Their emails are often full of grammatical and spelling errors and they request a deposit before the potential tenant has had a chance to preview the rental property.

• Never wire funds (using Western Union or any other carrier) to anyone claiming to be a landlord currently living in a foreign country.

• Never give out personal financial information (checking account number, SSN, etc.).

• Trust your instincts. If something seems strange, or you don't feel completely comfortable with a landlord, do not rent from him/her and discontinue further correspondence.

• Be cautious when detailed information, personal photos or property pictures, etc. are provided without requesting it, as this is typical scammer behavior.

If you suspect that you have been targeted by a rental scam, report it to your local law enforcement agency immediately.

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