The WhatsApp scam of the false apartment for rent: 'the requirements to see it were the last payroll and the DNI'

Renting an apartment is more complicated than ever today. To the scarcity of supply and high prices, intrinsic problems of the sector, we must add the activity of cybercriminals who take advantage of this situation to perpetrate new types of scams. On this occasion, it is not about obtaining the credit or debit card data but other equally personal information that They will help scammers request a loan that will go into their pockets, but the victim must pay.

The testimony of a victim of this type of scam is collected by the media 20minutos. This is Inés, fictitious name, who a few months ago was looking for an apartment in Madrid and made several contacts after consulting various real estate portals. Thus, he found an advertisement offering an apartment that fit his needs. already good price.

“It was an apartment in Puerta del Ángel with its advertisement, its photos and such and it said that He could only be contacted by WhatsApp. We contacted the landlord and he told us that the requirements to see the apartment were the last payroll and a photocopy of the DNI and then he only asked for a deposit of one month, that is, he asked for very little compared to the rest, it was candy,” Inés explains to 20minutos.

After sending payroll and ID, the scammer disappeared. Her WhatsApp stopped receiving the messages that Inés sent and the ad disappeared from the real estate portal. Instead, a message indicated that had been removed because it was a suspicious advertisement. Inés forgot about it and shortly after she found another apartment that she could rent.

The scam was revealed two months later, when he started receiving daily calls in his office, from different phone numbers. Upon answering, she was informed that I had a debt of almost 6,000 euros with a bank. Inés, knowing that she had none, I assumed it was some kind of scam and hung up..

In one of the calls he was told that it was Cetelem, a banking entity dedicated to consumer credit, so she decided to contact the company. “Then they ask me for my full name and my ID and they tell me: 'Yes, we have been trying to locate you for a long time because They have requested a loan in your name and we believe that they have impersonated your identity.'”.

Then he learned that communication with the scammer had been cut off. the same day the bank authorized the credit. The scammers had used it to finance a purchase at a mobile store worth 5,816 euros.

From Cetelem, they assured Inés that this type of phishing, identity theft, using documents obtained in the simulation of a rental operation, it's something common. In the loan contract, the only authentic information was Inés's name and surname. She was accompanied by “an online identification certificate” which is unknown how the scammers were able to obtain it. In this case, which is under police investigation, the bank has assured him that will cancel your debt.