(CMR) Scammers continue to target Cayman residents with a number of fraudulent emails and online rental scams.
One CMR reader reached out to us earlier today to inform us that they received a phishing email which appears to be from the Bank of Butterfield. Upon closer examination, it is clear the email is not from the bank but is attempting to get them to click on a link. The email makes various threats of account suspension if the client does not authenticate their online account.
The idea is that it will redirect you to a fake website that will capture your login credentials.
In an additional scam, the RCIPS Financial Crime Unit (FCU) said that they had received multiple reports regarding an online rental scam via the popular website EcayTrade.
Police are aware of at least one person losing CI$2,000.00. The FCU is advising the public to bear in mind the following warnings and information when looking for any such rental property online:-
The fraudulent adverts usually include photographs, details of the apartment and an email address for the listing agent.
Once the initial contact is established, the criminal sends additional information with a seemingly logical explanation for the lucrative rental package. This includes all utilities, cable, gas and internet connection/Wi-Fi. The victim is informed that there is no local representative and that the property is managed by Airbnb who handles the entire rental process.
Once interest is established the listing agent sends step by step procedures on how to reserve the apartment via Airbnb.
Further information is provided and the victim is requested to wire transfer funds to a third party bank account outside of the jurisdiction. After the transaction goes through, the criminal typically removes the advertisement from EcayTrade, ignores all follow-up emails and the victim is never able to recoup their losses.
FCU recommends that residents interested in purchasing items or renting property online ensure they are purchasing/renting from a reputable source by verifying the legitimacy of the seller/listing agent and their actual possession of the property/merchandise.