March 28, 2023


Without Art It's Really Boring!!!

My Pictures Enterprise Was Qualified by a Bogus Look at Fraud

4 min read

What would you do for this verify? I’m photographer Dave Koch, and this is the story of how my genuine estate pictures business was a short while ago targeted by a fake test scammer.

I was lately employed to shoot six properties of varying dimensions. It was my typical amount for MLS shoots, so whilst it is a major task, it was almost nothing I was going to make a ton of dollars on. All properly and good… but let’s go back to the commencing, where all good stories begin.

The Initial Customer Ask for

My initially get in touch with with Tony Montego was on April 1st, 2022…. And that really should have instructed me something ideal there. It was a small and to-the-place e mail that merely explained: “I want your Pictures support in Salt Lake City”. The electronic mail was from “WENDY’S Homes, LLC

Abrupt to be certain, but I have gotten other, very similar terse email messages that have turned out to be good positions. I replied the exact day with:

“Thanks for your email. What can we do for you?”

To which Tony replied with a considerably for a longer period e-mail detailing his desires.

Tony tells me he desires 6 qualities shot, all in the Salt Lake Valley. He delivers addresses and square footage totals for each — that aids a Good deal! He goes on to say he desires 30 to 40 pictures of every locale, covering equally inside and exterior. Best of all, his dates are open, so I can decide on and decide on when to shoot. All he needs is a quote.

Perfectly, this is very good for me — I have a little something to fill in on slack times, and I have no rush having them. This is not uncommon I have done work opportunities like this for builders before… and I really like undertaking them mainly because of the flexibility.

I get my quote out, primarily based on his specified sq. footage estimates that night. The future working day, he replies that he is going to need to have “before and after” visuals, so he is doubling my estimate, and he asks if that is all right. Then he asks me to make an “invoice payment request by using QuickBooks” for that total.

I do not use QuickBooks, so I reply that I cannot do this. He then asks for my name and deal with to ship a verify. I explain to him I only need to have 50 percent down as a deposit, but he insists on having to pay in comprehensive. Again, abnormal, but not unheard of.

The Verify Arrives

The next issue I know, a check out is sent to my place of work for the entire amount of money. Once more, unusual but not unheard of.

The envelope that arrived via USPS.
The contents of the envelope.

But then Tony emails me this not 10 minutes after the supply: “The look at shipped to your front doorway, did you receive it?”

Now my spidey perception commences tickling…. Was this man just viewing super closely…? Or perhaps he just obtained an e-mail notification. Regardless, I’m commencing to believe this is bizarre. But I react sure, I have it in hand. Then I get this:

“Friday, may be immediately after the check out clears, you can make a deposit by way of your cellular lender application or ATM today”

And now I am persuaded it’s a fraud. I really don’t know how or why… But this ain’t suitable.

Pink Flags Everywhere you go

Now I look at the test, and I see that the Wendy’s logo does not search suitable. And it is printed otherwise than the relaxation of the examine. And the return tackle on the transport label is not Dave Thomas Boulevard.

The Wendy’s symbol did not look right…

I seem back in excess of things, and I notice none of his e-mails have a signature bar, with “Senior VP of Acquisitions” or everything like that… No signatures at all.

But the most important red flag was the Gmail tackle. Everyone working for Wendy’s would absolutely use a email deal with, or a little something really similar. NOT a Gmail deal with!

I Google Wendy’s Houses, and there in fact is such an entity. But Googling “Tony Montego” is significantly more exciting — I suggest you do it. Somebody has established a Tony Montego Nigerian Scammer webpage on LinkedIn, that is a hoot. But there’s plenty of there to know this is a fraud.

I would just like the community to know about this scam… and scams in common. If it’s much too fantastic to be correct, it possibly is. Look at out return e-mail addresses. Question queries. Protect on your own. And really don’t have faith in Tony!

I have no question that Wendy’s has Almost nothing to do with this, so I imply no slight in opposition to them, it is just a scammer who has chosen them to operate his scam with. But there is no doubt this is a scam.

Be safe and sound out there!

About the author: Dave Koch is a functioning true estate and commercial photographer based in Utah. With about a ten years of experience in the discipline, Dave has been acknowledged by his friends with the Finest of State award two times for his professional photography. Prior to stepping out on his personal, Dave put in fifteen a long time as a experienced photojournalist across California, Arizona, and Utah. For enjoyable, Dave enjoys investing his totally free time exploring the length and breadth of his adopted dwelling state of Utah with his wife and daughter. You guessed it: getting photographs. You can uncover more of his get the job done on his internet site, Facebook, and Instagram.

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