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Watch out for the Unexpected Invoice Scam

We received this e-mail from a reader some time ago, but I thought that it, and my response, was worth bringing to your attention in case it’s something you’ve experienced or find happening to you some time in the future.

I presently am being invoiced for €983 for some international directory that is set up in Switzerland.  I have received three invoices so far and have responded to each one, telling them that I am not interested in being in their directoy.  I have not forwarded any monies, however they are saying that this is a legally binding contract etc.  I have photocopied all correspondance and brought them down to my solicitor to deal with it.

Our response to our reader was as follows:

From our perspective, we’ve received a couple of complaints about this type of scam in the past. As well as these bogus directory entries, there are similar letters that people with websites receive asking for money in order to renew their website names. We’ve even received a few of these ourselves.

The response to all of these types of scams is the same – you can just bin the letters and ignore them. If someone wants to put you in their directory, they’re free to do so – but you’re not obliged to pay for it. As there’s no request from you to have your entity added to their directory, you haven’t entered into any contract – and therefore you’re under no obligation to pay.

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