Today I got yet another snail mail scam as a printed letter. It looks like this:
The scammers are claiming, that they are missing my corporate VAT ID. Hm. That's strange. All the other information they got from Finnish Business Registry (ytj.fi). But as they are missing my valuable VAT-number, I'll need to fill it into a pre-filled form and add a binding signature. I'm not exactly sure, what exactly should I do with this form after signing it, but such a form was sent to me.
Caution! Scam here is in the monotype-font part (see above page 2):
Order: We hereby confirm the accuracy of our company' s data as per the information given above and we hereby place an order with DAD GmbH (Publisher) to publish them in a graphically highlighted form on www.e-b-n.eu according to the general terms and conditions printed overleaf.
We accept the advertisement' s annual costs of 890 Euro, which are payable in advance upon receipt of the invoice. We acknowledge that the contract is valid for the next three years and subsequently will be automatically extended annually unless we provide a written notice requesting termination of the contract, this being no later than three months before the expiration of the contract's term.
We are only able to revoke the contract by registered letter within fourteen days of the order date; whereby the date of postage is decisive. We authorize the Publisher to use contents found on our website for the layout of our insertion.
We acknowledge Hamburg-Mitte as place of performance and jurisdiction and that German law is solely applicable. We confirm that prior to this order placement we had no business relationship with the Publisher. We agree that our company's data will be stored electronically.
Whoa! That's a long and difficult to read. All that easier to miss the part with "We accept the advertisement' s annual costs of 890 Euro, which are payable in advance upon receipt of the invoice". Oh! I thought this was some kind of "final reminder", not an order nor invoice.
There is an actual website http://e-b-n.eu/ with all collected publicly available business information in it.
To make this scam more believable, scammers added actual addresses and phone numbers in Hamburg, Germany. I don't know if neither of them are legit. I do know, that German business registry doesn't have Commercial Register, Companies' Section, Hamburg Local Court, Record No. 88115 with name of European Business Register. Actually, that record number belongs to somebody completely innocent. Also the German VAT ID of 813739877 seems to belong to somebody, but I don't know how to do a lookup on German VAT IDs, so I don't know whose VAT ID it is.
Yep, got the same letter. For some reason this happened just weeks after I sent invoice to european company (who might have checked my Y-number). Company has been running since 2014 and suddenly after my first european invoice, I got this scam letter...just coincidence? I don't think so...
+1 here. since anything that comes to long inactive Tmi is usually about "gimme...gimme..." had to read the whole thing. Still, I can imagine people falling for it. Pity that police hasn't closed them down for so long.
Thank you all for information. The same scam and dirty story is happening also in Slovenia. We report this to authority (thay said it is law problem), but we think that this is organize crime and scam (since 2013!). Where is police (Interpol?)? Is it really neccesary to hire lawyers to fight against scamers? Wrong world.
We got one today in Riga, Latvia too! Good news for us! Here, in Latvia, prices are lower, we will be charged "only" 771 EUR/Year . Seriously speaking, it seems that in Germany this "honorable" company is well known:
+1 for Riga, Latvia! Apparently, we got our "Final Reminder" At first I thought it was a serious company, but my gut feeling told me there had to be something dodgy going on there. I couldn't help but wonder why they had to ask for our VAT number specifically, considering that they already had other info about us in quite some detail.
And yes - always, ALWAYS read the small print!
If the address they provide is not legit, how do they get the information if you send the letter back to them? And if it is legit, why cant they be tracked via adress?Or this works only if you reply by e-mail or register on their website?
The same here in Bulgaria! i wish i could meet these guys in "private". The letter itself was packed in 2 envelopes - it was sent from Czech Republic - from Breclav, though there is no postal stamp from there - just from Bulgaria. Inside was an envelope with address from Hamburg, Germany.
Horrible, I fell into the trap of EBN in Croatia. I was sure I necessarily have to send the data because I do business with EU member states. I have received a bill to 677.00 euros. I sent them an urgent termination of contract because first: I am not authorized to sign any agreement (authorized only owner of the company where I work) and secondly: even for a moment I did not know that signing any contract. Now I literally harassed with letters, with penalties. Horror! In Croatia such advertising costs 100 euros per year. Shame for the EU and for Germany to permit such gangs to operate.