Security Centre

Tips and tools for holidaymakers and property owners
in how to maximise their holiday rental experience

Recognising phishing

How to spot a phishing email.

At Owners Direct, we're working hard to prevent you from becoming the victim of fraud, such as phishing.

What is phishing?

A phishing email is a fake email that criminals create to try and trick you into divulging your personal account information. We've created this guide to to help you spot the telltale signs of a phishing email and ensure your details remain private.

What has the phishing email asked you to do?

A genuine email from Owners Direct will never:

  • Ask you to sync or verify your account
  • Threaten you with deactivation, or ask you to click a link to reactivate an account we have closed
  • Ask you to reveal your passwords or answers to your security questions
  • Offer an enormous reduction through a voucher; if it looks to good to be true, it probably is!

Beware of fake enquiries that look legitimate. Check that the property number referenced on the enquiry matches your listing number, and that the site where you advertise is mentioned, rather than one of our sister sites.

 

Where are the links taking you?

There are simple ways to check if a link is trustworthy:

  • Hover your mouse over the link and check that the url that pops up will take you to Owners Direct
  • If you click on a link, check that the log-in page url starts with ‘https’ and the padlock sign before you enter your account details – this denotes that the site is safe
  • If you have any doubts, always Google the site you want to use and access your account from there

If a link doesn’t look secure or genuine, do not enter your account details.

Check the language

The following examples often indicate a fraudulent email:

  • If you are greeted informally, such as ‘Hi’, or addressed as a ‘valued customer’
  • Poor spelling or ‘typos’
  • Basic grammatical errors or poor punctuation
 

Check the email addresses

Take a closer look at who sent you the suspicious email:

  • Does it come from an Owners Direct or HomeAway (our sister site) domain?
  • Is the email address consistent with emails you have previously received from us?
  • Although it may have Owners Direct in the address, a phishing email will be sent from a different address from the one we use to email you

Be aware that phishers may spoof email addresses. Spoofing is when a scammer sends an email that appears to be from a legitimate company, such as your email provider, bank, or even Owners Direct. The idea is to trick you into thinking that the message is from someone you trust, which makes you open the email and follow its instructions.

It is important to note that these emails do not originate from and are in no way connected to these legitimate companies; the email addresses are just edited to make it appear this way. The messages actually originate from the scammer’s email account and is sent from their email server.

 
What to do if you notice anything suspicious.

Do NOT click on any links within the email

Forward the suspicious email to spoof@homeaway.com and our security team will be notified. Please note that while we will investigate all emails sent to us, we are unable to send replies from this address

Get in touch and ask for confirmation via our contact us page

 

Follow these simple steps and together we can keep you safe from phishing attacks.