Community Counselling & Resource Centre

Online rental scam circulating in the Peterborough area

May 15th, 2017

Peterborough police are warning residents about an online rental scam circulating in the area.

Police have recently received several calls from people reporting they had responded to a Kijiji ad regarding a potential rental unit, or had been contacted by someone claiming to be a landlord after they had posted an ad looking for a rental unit.

The complainants were asked to provide personal information and then asked to send a rental deposit through an email money transfer or Western Union money transfer.

In all of the instances, the complainants did not provide any money. Instead, they went to visit the rental address in person. In each instance, the property had been listed for sale and, when the complainants spoke to the current residents, they discovered the property was not for rent.

The Peterborough Police Service reminds residents to follow these tips before providing any personal information or funds online for a rental property:

  • When searching for rentals, go to the address. Schedule a showing and confirm its availability.
  • Request a lease or contract. Review it thoroughly.
  • Complete open source searches on rental addresses to ensure it’s not a duplicate post.
  • Do not send funds to strangers.
  • Contact Equifax and Transunion if you’ve provided sensitive information on applications.
  • Go with your gut. If it seems fishy, it probably is.

If you want to report a fraud or a scam, contact the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre toll free at 1-888-495-8501.

If you have been the victim of a scam — meaning you have provided money or personal information to fraudsters — contact the Peterborough Police Service’s non-emergency line at 705-876-1122 or online at

For more information on rental scams, visit the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre website.