Share: Share a time when you or someone you know was the recipient of an inappropriate use of digital media or when you might have used digital media in an inappropriate manner. How did this make you or others feel? What might have been done differently? Post to the forum by clicking the link below.
Several years ago my husband and I listed our home for sale on a website that is popular for free listings. We had time to sell this property so were willing to take our own photos, type up a listing, and field calls from potential buyers. We eventually chose to move the listing to a real estate agent who did help us sell our home. Several weeks later a friend reached out to us stating they saw that our property was still listed but was now listed as being available to rent. To our utter dismay, we quickly found the listing and realized a scammer was at work. In this fraudulent posting, there were the pictures of our home that I had taken but with a fabricated listing that this space was for rent. The text gave a long, fictional account of why the "renter" had to lease out their home and how it was immediately for rent with a sizable deposit. We were horrified to see our house pictures being used in this way by a scammer looking to steal money from unsuspecting individuals simply looking for housing.
To counteract this act of fraud, we made an additional posting to this site stating that the listing that was posted as "house for rent" was in fact a fraud and to not reply. I believe we also reported their add as suspicious. This experience felt like a surprising breach of privacy and security. It was disturbing that someone could take our pictures of our home and reuse them in this way. I was grateful we did not have any people in the pictures or other identifying information but it was bothersome nonetheless. This occurrence made us more cautious of using this free website in the future.