Constance Hall said he initially felt “stupid” when the scam came to light. Photo/Facebook
Constance Hall said all her savings had been “wiped out” following a sophisticated scam.
The Perth mummy blogger said she felt ‘stupid’ and ‘devastated’ after paying money via an email link to what she thought was a property agency to secure a rental property for her and his children, only for the addressee. be a fraudster.
Speaking to Facebook to explain her predicament, she said the bank managed to recover just $7.57 of the thousands of dollars she had paid out.
But Hall insisted she was not trying to collect money from her followers and asked people not to donate to a GoFundMe page that has sprung up.
Taking to social media on Wednesday evening, Hall wrote that she now had “officially the worst school vacation ever.”
Hall said she currently lives with her mother who she “loved” but it was a pressure with the family lying on the living room floor.
“I saved money to get our own rental, just a six-month lease before fully accommodating our stay at Mom’s.”
The long-term plan was for Hall to buy a house, but in the meantime, she and the kids needed space, she said.
But it was a struggle with the rental market in Perth being so tight.
“So I decided to look at the properties that had been online the longest, hoping to increase my chances.
“And there was, a beautiful house with swimming pool and garden and four furnished bedrooms available only for four months, perfect.
“I would never spend that much money on rent, but I felt like we all needed a break and I could afford it, it just meant I couldn’t save while I was there,” she wrote.
Hall said she had been accepted for the property. As always, there was paperwork to sort out. Having done so, she received an email asking her to pay a sum to cover the deposit and four weeks’ rent.
“The kids are going to be so excited”
“It was a lot of money. I was emptying my savings account and part of the salary last week, it’s a big hit for the school holidays, but I thought how excited the kids will be when I will tell them that it will be like a holiday in itself.”
But then things started to go south.
“Friday morning rolls around and I got a phone call from (the agency), saying they’ve been hacked,” Hall said.
“The last two emails I received on the same thread weren’t from them, they were from hackers.
“The bank details weren’t really theirs and the house was never approved.
“At first I felt stupid, how could I let it happen? But I’m a business woman, I often pay large sums internationally, I’m a scammer and don’t pay anything that doesn’t come from a known contact with a credible person. email history, so no, I’m not stupid. It literally could have happened to anyone desperate to secure a rental.
Four-bedroom homes in the area Hall considered typically cost between $700 and $1,000 a week, meaning she could have lost up to $8,000.
The bank only recovers $7.57 out of thousands
Hall said it was “too much to cash in” and the rental agent said “there was nothing to do” and call his bank.
The bank said it authorized the transaction, the likelihood of recovering the money was “minimal” and contacting the police, who said much the same.
“Today Commonwealth Bank Fraud Department got back to me and said out of the thousands I transferred they were able to recover $7.57 and that was it.
“All my savings have been wiped out.
“The kids are devastated, we’ve had a vacation this late because the mums (sic) broke and can’t even ask for more.
“It’s by no means a shame party, I’m in better financial shape than many, many people and for that I remain grateful and need to look back,” she said.
“But saving was never easy for me and I was so proud of that money and felt like I was finally doing something that represented how successful I had been despite all the odds.
“Everything getting robbed in an instant… felt incredibly unfair and it made me think of other single moms, moms who don’t have their moms to rely on, or the career this sequel has blessed me with. .”
She added that she “just wanted to shout online” and let her followers know that if you get an email to pay huge amounts of money, check with the organization the email is supposed to be from. .
A number of people commenting on social media have suggested that the estate agent should take some responsibility.
“How is it not partly or wholly the real estate’s fault…that you were hacked and scammed through their email accounts?” one says.
After rumors started circulating that the GoFundMe page had been set up to help pay off the lost money, Hall insisted it was unnecessary.
“You are so nice, but please don’t do anything like that. Really, I really meant it when I said I was doing so well and your kind gestures would go the extra mile for yourselves or for people in need.”