Warning over Portrush holiday home scam

Warning over Portrush holiday home scam

A number of people have fallen victim to a holiday home scam in Portrush and other locations throughout Northern Ireland.

Social media users have been duped by fraudsters after responding to holiday home adverts published on Facebook marketplace.  

Responding to a query by Causeway Coast Community, police say that they recently received reports in relation to a holiday fraud that has been passed to Action Fraud.

Chair of Scamwise NI Partnership, Police Service of Northern Ireland Superintendent Gerard Pollock said: "As we're all more eager to go on holidays after going for two years without one, criminals are also more eager than ever to get their hands on our money. We know criminals are preparing for the summer with tailor-made holiday scams and, so, we would encourage everyone to do thorough research when booking holiday plans online.

"Most often holiday scams start with an advertisement online, or on a social media platform. There are key ways, however, to stop yourself from falling victim to these scams.

“Do your research on the company or accommodation you plan to book - don't just rely on one website or one review. If a company is fake, there's a good chance others will write about their experience online too.

"Look for the logo, check to see if the company is a member of Abta and, if you're booking a flight, check to see it's approved by Atol.

"Never pay by bank transfer - the safest way to pay is by credit card and, where possible, avoid paying by bank transfer to someone you do not know or have not met in person.

"If the deal looks too good to be true, it probably is."

If you have been a victim of a scam, report it to police on 101, to your bank immediately, online at www.actionfraud.police.uk or call 0300 123 2040.
Information and advice is also available at http://www.nidirect.gov.uk/scamwiseni or the ScamwiseNI Facebook page @scamwiseni

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