Scammers are recently using a powerful new tool named ‘Land Lordz’ to trick Airbnb customers into losing their money. Land Lordz, a software-as-a-service platform, helps automate the creation and management of fake Airbnb sites. It can also send messages to users, advertising the fraudulent listings.
How does it work - A user pays a sum of $550 a month to avail a monthly subscription of ‘Land Lordz’ plan. The amount is paid on landlordz[.]site. The site contains more than 500 scam properties and interactions with up to 100 guests who are planning to book the fake properties.
Currently, the scammers have four dozen fake properties which are located in London and the surrounding United Kingdom.
How a customer is tricked - Once the victims respond to the fake listing of properties, they are taken to a phishing site that looks like Airbnb.com. However, on a closer look, one can find the manipulation in the URL address. The fraudster used airbnb.longterm-airbnb[.]co[.]uk instead of Airbnb.com.
“The site looks exactly like the real Airbnb, includes pictures of the requested property, and steers visitors toward signing in or to creating a new account. The fake site simply forwards all requests on this page to Airbnb.com, and records any usernames and passwords submitted through the site,” researchers from Krebs on Security noted.
How to stay safe - In order to stay safe from such scams, users are advised to take the following precautions.