A dad has warned people about the increasingly complex and hard-to-spot scams that are out there that could cost you thousands.
The father, who goes by the Reddit username @marriott81 was looking to get his garden done up and claims he fell victim to fraud after his tradesman’s Facebook was “compromised”, despite knowing the man in person.
Posting on Reddit he said: “Today I got scammed to the tune of 5k.
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“I'm tech savvy. But this scam is devious and really. I'm going to point out the obvious hindsight red flags. People will probably say this is obvious, and looking back on it it is.
“I had a guy come around and quote me for garden work. Knew him through a friend of a friend in the gym. Legit person. I have an 11 month son, who needs somewhere to play as our garden is a mess.”
The Redditor said that he and the tradesman had spoken online and after a long discussion with his wife had decided that getting on with the work was worth taking out a loan for.
He explained: “We talked on Facebook and was all good. My wife and I deliberated for days, and in the end took a loan to cover it. Money would be tight but our son needs to play.
“I had a message saying that dates were limited and if I wanted to book, contact his site manager and he would book me in (red flag 1).
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“I emailed, they asked me for the quote (red flag 2). They ask for 5k deposit upfront (red flag 3) but they had a date available.
“I go ahead, take the details and send the money. Barclays blocked it. (Red flag 4). I get a call, from their fraud team. As far as I'm aware, totally legit, guy wants money. I authorise it. Because I can't send 5k at once, I do two lots of 2k and one lot of 1k.”
The man said the red flags started stacking up in his mind and felt obliged to message the man he had met and who that was due to be carrying out the work.
He added: “My mind is telling me, something is wrong. I go to my boxing session, and something makes me message the guy and say "I've paid your manager, looking forward to the work" to which, as you can guess, he says who[?]"
“Turns out, his Facebook account was compromised and I had been speaking to a scammer.”
He added that the most stressful aspect was the impact the saga was having on his family.
He said: “My wife and I have sat for the past hour crying as now our son has had it taken away from him, and that's what annoys me most. I post this as a caution to everyone. Please please please. Check in on your friends and family.”
The Daily Star have approached Barclay’s bank for comment.
Have you had a similar experience with scammers? Let us know in the comments.
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