It is rather unfortunate that we are sending another notice about scams going on in the real estate world. I’m sure everyone reading this feels that fighting against scams is like playing a game of whack-a-mole. What’s the latest? Scammers pretending to be employees of or official communications from DPOR.

The first thing you should note is the e-mails come from Gmail or Yahoo e-mail servers. So, the server after @ is or DPOR does not send e-mails from Gmail or Yahoo. The easiest way to tell if they are very likely from DPOR is to verify that they end with .gov.

These e-mails generally contain one of two things. Either they are promising opportunities for grant funding or other money, OR they have a secure file that you must download and open on your computer. Neither is real, and both are designed to take your information—where it goes from there is anyone’s guess.

What can you do to protect yourself? Have strong spam filters; you may have to tweak them and search your spam folder often to make sure you whitelist real e-mails. If you receive unsolicited e-mails making promises of money or files, it is very likely a scam, so be sure to verify with the person that sent it to you by phone or in person. Please do not click on links in e-mails if you are not sure that the e-mail is real to begin with, and the same goes for attachments or any downloads. If you are expecting documentation or other downloadable files, verify they sent them.

How can you verify that DPOR sent you the e-mail? You can contact DPOR’s Communications and Digital Media Manager, Kerri O’Brien, whose contact information is readily available on DPOR’s website. If you suspect that it is a scam, please report it to the Federal Trade Commission at

Please be mindful of any electronic communications. Scammers can be clever; but you don’t have to fall into their traps if you remain vigilant.