VMac Holiday Group
A glossy travel brochure is being posted to WA homes and containing fake lottery scratchie tickets Consumers are warned not to respond to the latest travel scam, this time from the VMac Holiday Group from Malaysia, as it is an advance fee fraud.
The brochure offers complimentary lottery prizes to celebrate a new investment opportunity in Australia. One of two scratchie tickets contained in the brochure reveal a prize of $US130,000 and, to claim the prize, recipients must provide personal information and pay half of a $7,000 release fee.
This latest scam is the fourth reincarnation of scams that have been subject to public warnings in the past. Of major concern to WA ScamNet is that people who have responded to this offer are being asked to send a scanned copy of their passport and provide their bank account details for payment.
They are then advised that there is a $7,000 government tax to pay before the proceeds can be released and the travel company will pay half, if the recipient sends the other half by wire transfer to Malaysia or a ‘sponsor’ in Hong Kong.
An investigation revealed that the website of the company promoting this scam was registered in May 2011, conflicting with claims the company is celebrating its tenth anniversary.
Similar scams that have been previously identified and named include the Malaysia Starize Travelling Group (in April 2009), the Euphoria Travelling Group (in December 2009) and the EverMas Tourism Group (in September 2010).There are certain similarities between these scams and we believe they are the work of the same organisation.
WA ScamNet are currently working with Australia Post to intercept these brochures but many have already been delivered. Our advice to consumers is not to respond to this unwelcome arrival in their mail box and throw the brochures and fake scratchie tickets in the bin.