Reporting a scam can help others
Reporting scams is important to help stop criminals, and to prevent others from falling victim to similar crimes. Timely and accurate reporting can also increase the scam victim’s chances of reimbursement from their financial institution.
How to report a scam
Reporting a scam in a timely and comprehensive manner is important.
If you’ve been scammed, there are organisations you should report the scam to as soon as possible. Try not to feel embarrassed – falling victim to a rent scam can happen to anyone. Cybercriminals are highly organised and professional criminals who deceive, manipulate, and exploit vulnerabilities. Their tactics are very persuasive which is why so many people, of all different ages and backgrounds, fall victim to their scams.
Reporting a scam is important and helpful to others from a preventative perspective.
Incidents of fraud which occur in Ireland should be reported to your local Garda station, who can investigate the matter on your behalf. If you live outside this jurisdiction, you should report the matter to your local police station and request that the complaint be forwarded to Ireland for investigation.
In order to report a rental scam, you will need to visit your local police station. A member from an Garda Siochána or local police force will establish the exact details of the fraud and take a statement from you. It is advisable to have the details written down before your visit, just to avoid any confusion, as every detail counts from an investigative perspective.
You are likely to be asked the following when providing your statement:
- Date you were first in contact with the scammer
- How you were introduced (eg. platform, online advertisement etc.)
- How you communicated (calls, whatsapp, messages etc.)
- Rent scammer details including phone number, social media profile details, alias etc.
- Total amount lost in the scam
- Details of how you paid the rent scammer (e.g. Revolut, bank transfer etc.)
- Rent scammer’s account details (bank account number, Revolut details etc.)
- Any documentation to support the details of the case (correspondence etc.)
- Any other relevant information
From there, the Gardai will log the report in their computer system (PULSE) and commence their investigation. It’s worth noting that the number of prosecutions versus the number of rent scams reported is extremely low however we would always recommend that you report it. Also, each police investigation is assigned a unique reference code which you can use when following up with your financial institution to seek redress.
As a matter of urgency, we would also recommend that you report the rent scam to the following:
- The platform/property website which introduced you the scammer
- Your bank and the rent scammer’s bank (you should do this right away)
- Any other relevant agency or advocacy group (Examples in the UK include Action Fraud in the UK, Citizen’s information, Which.co.uk or https://www.crimevictimshelpline.ie/ in Ireland)
- Secureprop.com – we log and monitor scams in order to raise awareness and alert relevant platforms, community hosts Universities etc.)
Report a scam here
Finally, it’s worth noting that there are supports in place for victims of rent scams and financial crimes. If you or a friend or family member has been impacted by crime, there are a number of organisations in Ireland who can help.
Threshold’s helpline is open Monday to Friday, 9am- 9pm at 1800-454-454. Additional information can be found on their website here.
For student support and advice, contact the Union of Students in Ireland (USI) on (01)-7099-300 or your relevant point of contact in your educational institution. Students moving to Ireland to study can also contact the Irish Council for International Students (ICOS) on +353-1-660-5233 for helpful information and advice.
Broader crime victim support is also offered via the Crime Victims Helpline in Ireland (registered Irish Charity). You can contact the Crime Victims Helpline Freephone at 116006.
Feel free to contact us at email@example.com if you need further assistance.