Always on our guard.

In the tourism business we have always to be on our guard for potential scams and they are getting more plausible as time goes on. A few years ago the scams were very obvious such as a potential booking for 6 Greek Priests or 3 Honeymooning couples, what pair of newly Weds want to go on Honeymoon with another two or three couples.

The premise behind the Scams is to purportedly over-pay for the cost of the stay either by accident or by design, as in the scam below, and then ask the accommodation provider to refund or pass on the over-payment. The scammer hopes that the refund transaction processes faster than the time it takes for their payment to be uncovered as worthless, for example in the time when cheques were more common a Bank might immediately credit your account with the amount on a cheque and then pass it on for clearing, the Bank was always safe in the knowledge that they would recover the funds from your account if the cheque later bounced at the presenting Bank, – by this time the hotel or B & B may have already refunded the scammer.

This scam below almost caught me out as it enquires about dates that are proving popular for competitors in the upcoming World Police and Fire Games  – I even initially assumed it was potentially a Police Station or Fire Station based on St. Vincent Street in Glasgow as they even go as far as providing a real address, on a street that I know well as my Business Bank is based there.  When I got the second tersely worded email asking for a total price and asking about payment by Credit Card my suspicions were raised and though I replied I then checked the email address out by pasting it in a Google Search Bar plus the word ‘Scam’ and the following scam warning site came up. “Scamwarners

Sure enough I then got the final email asking me to take my payment from their Credit Card Payment and pass on £3000 to their travel agent who does not have Credit Card facilities, (Doh!! what agent could not take Credit Cards), you can see my final email saying that I did not wish to proceed with this booking. I am not sure how the logistics of their Card payment would operate as my system requires bona fide addresses which are cross referenced with the` Card details but I am not going to hang around to find out.

It just makes one feel slightly violated to think one has been in contact with such criminals.

> Date: Sat, 11 May 2013 15:51:55 -0700
> Subject: booking
> From:
> To:
> Hello,
> I want to inquire about the rooms reservation for 6 people from 21st
> to 27th of July, 2013.
> The information that I request are as follows:
> Arrival date: 21st July
> Departure date: 27th July
> number of guests: 6
> number of rooms :3
> Get back to me if you have opening for reservation during my stated date.
> Warm Regards,
> Kelvin Coleman
> 19 St. Vincent Street
> Glasgow
> G2 5NW
> Scotland


From: David Maginn <>
Subject: RE: booking
To: “Kelvin Coleman” <>
Date: Tuesday, 14 May, 2013, 13:02


Thank you for your enquiry, sorry for the delay in replying.

I can confirm that I have a 3 bedroom 6 person house for your dates and the price would be £651.00 plus gas heating, (which should be minimal in July hopefully!!)

All the beds can be used as singles or as doubles.

David Maginn

Kelvin Coleman (


To: David Maginn

Date: Tue, 14 May 2013 15:52:24 +0100
Subject: RE: booking cost

Hello ,


Thanks for email and confirming that you have availability  for reservation.I want to have the grand total cost for reservation –

I also want you to confirm if its possible to make advance payment via credit card to properly secure the reservation …


Awaiting your swift response,




On Tue, 14/5/13, David Maginn <> wrote:
From: David Maginn <>
Subject: RE: booking cost
To: “Kelvin Coleman” <>
Date: Tuesday, 14 May, 2013, 16:26


It is difficult to predict an inclusive price, but as I emailed earlier the rental is £651.00 and I would estimate the heating to cost £20 for six days so a total price would be £671.00.

Yes it is possible to pay by Credit Card at this stage all we require is a 20% deposit, i.e. £134.20.

I hope that this is of help.

David Maginn


hello  ,


Thanks for your email and for the total cost for the reservation which you have provided.i have concluded all payment arrangement.


As soon as you receive my card detail for payment,I will like you to take the following steps:


A) Make an total charge of  £3671.00 + bank charges from my card Detail.


B) Deduct the total deposit of  £671.00  needed to secure book-


C) send the balance of £3000.00 via bank transfer to the prepaid travel agent who will handle our traveling logistics which i will advice.



The travel agent is in charge of the procurement of flight tickets of guests to and fro.


However, because agent do not have credit card facility and for security reason,i have decided that ONLY YOU will have to handle the credit card information.



Awaiting your swift response,






Sorry this is not ok, I do not wish to proceed with this booking.

David Maginn


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