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Go Back   Pollensa Forum > BEFORE YOU GO > Hotels, Villas & Apartments in Pollensa & Cala San Vicente

Hotels, Villas & Apartments in Pollensa & Cala San Vicente Discuss hotels, aparthotels, private villas, apartments and any other type of accommodation in the Pollensa area including Cala San Vicente. Do add reviews and comments for specific hotels and apartments. Readers find these very useful. However this forum is not a place for advertisements. Check out the 'Advertise' page on the main web site.

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  • 1 Post By roig cat
  • 1 Post By eleanor
  • 3 Post By copper
  • 1 Post By eleanor
  • 1 Post By JMD40

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Old 08-08-2013, 18:01
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Port de Pollenša
Posts: 561
Exclamation Spam - sunny vacations 75 - finland

I have just been made aware that a home away advert which I manage has been somehow meddled with. A potential customer from Finland had made an enquiry to me regarding a villa for September and received a reply from sunnyvacations75@hotmail.com confirming the availability, adding on a hefty security deposit, offering daily maid and laundry service if 100% payment received immediatlely etc.etc.
Clients paid 2 weeks ago into a bank account in Prague and now no replies from email or phone!!
Naturally I shall be looking into this as will the client but please be aware of any replies that offer something different to the advert and verify where the money is going.
I can offer the villa to this family but it looks like they are going to end up paying more than double the price and now I am left worried that someone will turn up on the doorstep believing they have booked another property!
Another reminder of the security that credit card (not debit) payments offer.
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Old 08-08-2013, 19:00
roig cat's Avatar
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: UK
Posts: 535

There are many threads on the net about hackers accessing owners email accounts on Homeaway.

In 2012 we booked villas in Ibiza and Competa via Homeaway. On both occasions the (different) owners contacted us to say their gmail accounts had been hacked. One hacker had asked for the plane fare from Barcelona to Ibiza as he had lost his wallet!

Yes, pay by Credit Card and phone the owner using the original phone number supplied.
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Last edited by roig cat; 08-08-2013 at 21:02.
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Old 09-08-2013, 08:52
eleanor's Avatar
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: on the coast in Essex
Posts: 1,739

Ownersdirect/homeaway it seems were aware of this last year as my cousin reported such action to them having had this happen to her. They really didn't have a very good re-action and didn't seem to be that concerned.

We stopped advertising with ownersdirect/homeaway as we also felt our details were being passed on to third parties although they state otherwise.

We like holidaylettings as we found them to be very thorough in their vetting of us prior to accepting our advertisment. This of course doesn't stop the hackers who can gain access in many ways but we did think from a renters point of view they did their job well.
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Old 09-08-2013, 09:23
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: New Forest
Posts: 651

I have used Owners Direct several times with great success but with Holiday Lettings not so successful ! Apartment was not 20 mins from the town we stayed in more like 40 and you had to walk through the shower tray to get to the toliet !!!! It was photographed very cleverly though

This wasnt in Port de Pollenca Nice to have the ones on this site to rely on !
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Old 09-08-2013, 11:28
eleanor's Avatar
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: on the coast in Essex
Posts: 1,739

Of course this wouldn't be holidaylettings fault but the person putting the details on their site. Photographs and details provided to any of these sites are supplied by either the owner or a holiday rental agency.
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Old 09-08-2013, 12:40
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 40

We used Owners Direct for a few years relatively successfully (one accurate description and one OK description) but, last year, found a lot of properties didn't seem to be 'Owner Direct' anymore they were put on there by management companies dealing with a large number of properties. My first encounter with this was to ask about August 2013 (in Sept 2012) to be told - the price will be this years plus 15% because the owners are going to improve over the winter. I asked what the improvements were and how the property would differ from 2012, to be told nothing had been decided yet - they were waiting to hear from the owners. So, we decided not to pay 115% of 2012 prices on the basis of such a woolly answer from, clearly, a management agent. Or, I suppose, may have been a scam like mentioned by the OP.

We ended up going back to where we were a decade ago, booking everything through one company: James Villas where an early booking appeared to give greater value and not scream opportunism. It will be interesting to see how it pans out and whether we made the right decision or not.

Last edited by Keswick1uk; 09-08-2013 at 12:46.
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Old 10-08-2013, 07:31
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Port de Pollenša
Posts: 561

To be fair to Home Away they are aware of the problem and they do send out emails warning their advertisers of ways to prevent hackers accessing their site but there must be a reason why they seem to have more hackers than anyone else. I tried to change my password recently and could not access after that and I guess that is where the problem lies.. although this problem seems to be with the scananavian adverts not spanish or english where I have been receiving enquiries.
Just wanted to remind people that it is still happening and is very easy and to just be aware that if someone seems to be bending over backwards to get you to pay asap and offering extras it could very well be a spam....
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Old 10-08-2013, 08:57
Join Date: Jan 2009
Posts: 138

It's happened to us also via home away ,thankfully the lady involved realised the emails requesting money from her were written very badly with poor grammar and contacted us directly. It was our gmail account that was hacked and home away were very helpful telling us what to look for in our account and helped us with all the security settings. The hacker had tampered with our filters and we were not receiving the emails .We now change our passwords often on both accounts and check the filters.
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