What is Phishing?
Phishing is a common form of online identity theft, and it occurs when a criminal is able to capture your email password and access your inbox. The term is a variant of fishing and alludes to baits used in hopes that the potential victim will bite by clicking a malicious link or opening a malicious attachment, in which case their financial information and passwords may then be stolen. When your email account is phished, criminals are able to intercept enquiries from travellers and request reservation payments without your knowledge. Your guests can lose money and you can lose reservations.
Keeping yourself safe from phishers
- Use secure online payments through secure credit card transactions. Our own HomeAway Payments™ is secure for both travellers and owners. Learn more about HomeAway Payments here.
- If an owner or manager accept payment via PayPal, be sure to fund your PayPal account with a credit card so your payment is protected.
- If you are an owner or manager, include your phone number on your holiday rental listing so that travellers can call you to confirm their reservation and payment details prior to sending money, especially when you are asking to be paid by cheque or through a bank transfer.
- If you are a traveller, call the phone number on a listing before sending payment.
- If you receive an email that you think might be from HomeAway but looks suspicious and claims to come from one of our brands, please call us at +44 (0)208 827 1971.
- To access your owner dashboard, only sign in to our official websites. To confirm it's an official website, make sure the URL (or address bar) starts with https://cas.homeaway.com (for both HomeAway.com and VRBO.com and HomeAway.co.uk)
Protecting your online accounts from identity theft
- Never provide personal information (e.g., passwords, security questions etc.) to anyone through email communication. You are most secure when you start at the homepage of your service provider (e.g., mail.google.com).
- If you receive a suspicious email, do not click on any links or reply. A suspicious email would be one that doesn't include normal brand heading, has typos and errors, or asks for personal information via email.
You can educate yourself on renting safely and phishing prevention at our Security Centre
We appreciate your participation and assistance with our efforts to operate the most secure and trusted vacation rental marketplace in the industry.
- How do I report suspected phishing or fraud?
- Why do I have to log-in to my dashboard to view traveller email addresses and phone numbers?