FRANCE I ITALY I GERMANY I ENGLAND I IRELAND I SCOTLAND I BELGIUM I HOLLAND I POLAND
Call 866 649 2116 or visit www.leboat.com/boatus for your exclusive offer
Come discover the romantic waterways of Europe!
You live to discover the secret little French restaurant you will remember forever; the perfect Italian
Prosecco in Venice and the lively Irish pub filled with song and dance.
You travel to discover the unique places that provide everlasting memories. With Le Boat the journey
is part of the discovery as you travel the waterways of Europe on your personal self-drive houseboat, a floating
villa that allows you to discover your next special memory stopping where you want and when you want.
No experience or licence required to discover memories in 9 different countries.
07914_LB_1213_AD_BOATUS_HALFPAGE.indd 1 10/31/13 12:00 PM 32 | BoatU.S. Magazine JUNE | JULY 2014
Nearly all scams involve emails, and they
often contain clues to alert you. Any one of
the following is a warning, and two or three
together should put you on high alert and
make you proceed with extreme caution.
■ No reference to what is being sold.
Scammers create a generic email to send to
thousands of people, so they tend to use general language that could apply to anything.
“Item,” “merchandise,” “what you are selling,” and other indefinite terms are common.
More adept scammers may insert a single
reference to your boat model and year. But
other than that, you’ll notice that the email
could apply to a car or jewelry.
■ Poor grammar and language use. Internet
scams usually originate from outside the
country, and the language often appears like
it wasn’t written by a native English speaker.
If the email passes the sniff test with respect
to language and grammar, consider whether
it really sounds like a boater talking about
a boat that he/she might actually buy. No
nautical terminology or intelligent questions?
■ No phone contact. Scammers will go to
great lengths not to talk to you, sometimes
after pressing you for a phone number.
They’ll give reasons ranging from being out
of the country to being in the military. Skype
makes it easy to talk to someone in either of
no longer the case, and crooks can produce
very convincing copies of the real thing, from
seemingly legitimate U.S. banks. Once the
bogus checks are deposited, they must be
cleared like any other check. Checks may
appear to clear your bank within a couple of
days, and those funds may appear “available”
in your account, but in reality it may take
another month or more for the bank to establish that a check is bogus, return it to you,
and debit your account for that amount. By
then, the money you transferred out of your
account for “shipping” is long gone.
PAYPAL VARIATION: Recently, PayPal has
become a target for scammers. The phony
buyer will ask for your PayPal ID in order to
send you a payment, again for substantially
more than the purchase price. Shortly after
that, you will receive a fake confirmation
from PayPal with your user ID for more than
the agreed purchase price, and the buyer
will contact you asking you to send the extra
money to a shipper. To make the scam look
more legit, if you refuse, you’ll receive additional fake notices from PayPal threatening to
close your account if you don’t transfer the
extra money as per your “agreement.”
ESCROW SCAM: In this variation, a bogus
seller advertises a boat on a website often
at a low but not quite scam-worthy price.
When you try to buy the boat, the seller will
suggest using an escrow service and recommend something that sounds legitimate like
Escrowprotect.com or GoogleMoney.com.
But the realistic-looking website is the center
of the scam, and once you transfer your money
you won’t hear anything more about the boat,
or the seller, ever again. Using an escrow service for a long-distance purchase makes good
sense, but make sure to pick one like Escrow.
com, eBay’s recommended escrow provider.
Be very cautious using escrow services you’re
not familiar with. Check the Better Business
Bureau’s (BBB) website to verify an Internet
escrow site’s validity. Remember that hiring
a qualified marine surveyor to inspect the
boat should be done before negotiations
and payment, and will protect you against
most selling scams.
For more on escrow scams and scam-avoidance tips, see this article online