Thursday, June 29, 2023

Airbnb hosts targeted to get fraud mortgages

You rent out your home on a short-term rental platform like Airbnb for the extra cash. Instead of receiving a five-star rating from the person you rent it to, they steal your identity and take out a mortgage worth hundreds of thousands of dollars on your home without your knowledge or consent. Toronto cops say fraudsters are out to rip you off and folks should beware.

Jay Allen MacDougall, 42, was arrested and charged with five counts of fraud over $5,000 and one count of laundering the proceeds of crime. MacDougall used a fake name to rent a home on Airbnb and obtained the homeowner's identity information. MacDougall then used that information to impersonate the homeowner and secure a mortgage from a private lender, stealing the proceeds. MacDougall attempted to take out $2.5m worth of fraudulent mortgages on five homes.

MacDougall stole over $1m.