Online Fraud Scam on Australian Businesses
Yes, for every genuine business owner out there trying to make a living on the Internet, there is another trying to use it to steal a quick buck.
This story just in from a contact of ours involved in the accommodation industry. A very neat little scheme and one to watch out for!
Here’s how it works.
The scammer calls or emails from another country to make a booking at the accommodation house in question . . .
When the booking is confirmed, they “mistakenly” pay on their credit card much more than the room rate, and then request that the balance be forwarded to their bank account somewhere else as a refund.
Sounds innocent enough, and why wouldn’t you help someone out who made a mistake?
Here’s the reason . . .
They are not using their own credit card, but are using a stolen credit card.
They will get to keep the refund balance that you kindly forward on to their account.
But when the stolen credit card is reported and the transaction is reversed by the bank, you will end up refunding the full amount back to the stolen credit card.
Not only did you end up with no payment for the booking, but you also sent the extra amount to the scammers account.
This is happening now.
Our contact was smart enough not to get caught out with it.
But it is an easy mistake to make and could cost you dearly.
As with anything online – be wary of things that are out of the ordinary, and take steps to protect yourself.
Another of our clients in the accommodation industry has just confirmed that these scammers will request you to make an extra charge on the Credit Card for an interpreter or tour associate, & then ask you to forward the extra funds to the interpreter or tour associate . . . who of course, is the scammer themselves.
Neat trick. Sounds legitimate. WATCH OUT !
What should you do now?
1. If you suspect an online credit card transaction, then seek confirmation from the bank.
2. If you need to make refunds, only refund to the original credit card.
3. Want some help or ideas? Just contact us at Hotpink Websites now.
Although the world is full of suffering, it is also full of the overcoming of it.
~ Helen Keller