It has come to our attention that various Internet solicitations have appeared with increased frequency on such posting boards as Craigslist.com encouraging consumers to deposit escrow funds to secure an apartment via payment through Western Union payable to www.cbharper.com. Please be advised that Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC and cbharper.com are not in any way connected to this solicitation which is in fact fraudulent. Craigslist, Western Union and law enforcement are being advised.
Additionally, we have been made aware of an Advance Fee Scam involving the unauthorized use of a brand name such as the Coldwell Banker D'Ann Harper REALTORS® brand name, website and email address.
The scammer lures the victim (e.g., a prospective tenant) by posting an offer of a high-standard apartment for low cost, even showing pictures of the apartment. The scammer uses online classified ad services such as craigslist.org to post such offers. The victim is told that the renter is "traveling," "vacationing abroad" or "relocating." The victim is required to pay a deposit via Western Union in exchange for the "keys" to the property. In an effort to instill confidence in this transaction, the scammer fraudulently claims to have listed the apartment with a local Coldwell Banker office and arranges for a fraudulent email notification posing as a Coldwell Banker representative (and using Coldwell Banker logos) to be sent to the victim. The scammer disappears once the deposit is received, leaving the prospective tenant defrauded.
Here are some tips to help you avoid such scams:
Most scams involve one or more of the following:
Who should you notify about fraud or scam attempts?
Thanks in advance.
Coldwell Banker Customer Care