Realtors® have worked for years to make consumers aware of scams targeting real estate transactions. Now, scammers are turning their attention to Realtors® themselves.
A recent alert from the Orlando Regional Realtor® Association warns of fraudulent letters from a fake “Florida Real Estate Board.” The letters threaten a Realtors® status as a licensee, demanding $225 with a warning that “failure to respond with your 2017 Agent Board Listing may lead to closure of board listing.”
This isn’t the first time scammers have targeted Realtors®, either. The Orlando association says in their message that the recent scams are the same as one initiated by scammers earlier in the year.
“The fake ‘Florida Real Estate Board’ scam that appeared to hibernate has roared back to life as REALTORS® across Florida report receiving old-fashioned letters,” the alert said.
Also included in the scam letter is a now-defunct website, http://floridaboardofrealtors.org/, which Realtor® Magazine described as looking “credible and professional.” The authentic-looking materials are a reminder that scammers may use sophisticated materials to entice payments from their victims.
Realtors® and consumers are encouraged to remain vigilant, especially when providing payment or their billing details to a website. Just as important, consumers and Realtors® can flag suspicious-looking real estate websites, letters, and other materials for the National Association of Realtors® by emailing them to firstname.lastname@example.org.