Employment Scams (Job Scams) are just one more way in which scammers separate hard-working people from their money. There are many variations and the Internet has been a God-send to these leeches, but almost all of them use some form of check fraud, whether it's receiving ('processing') counterfeit or redirected checks, forwarding stolen goods or the proceeds from selling stolen goods to a third party.
Most Internet jobs are advertised as Work From Home or Work At Home (WAH) and are intended to target home makers, retired people, disabled people, students and other people who just want to make a little extra cash, while staying at home.
Transaction Processing Assistant, Reshipping Agent, Goods Forwarding Executive, Processing Online Auction Listings are all job descriptions that are being used. The scammers haunt online job and classified ad websites (Monster.com, Craigslist.com, Dice.com etc) and forums where they use people to scatter bomb links to their worthless websites.
In most cases, they use Spam, to deliver their message. The website names change, often monthly, as thier website gets blacklisted. The websites are enticing, always seem to take the same format which should ring alarm bells:
If you are thinking that you have nothing to lose, you may be wrong. If your address is used as a receiving address for counterfeit checks or stolen products and you forward money/goods from your home address, you could be prosecuted for Money Laundering, Posession of Stolen Goods or Trafficking in Stolen Goods.
Making Money with Google?
If you've seen those spam ads about Making a fortune with Google then you should be aware that this is a complete scam. The (Domain) names change but the scam continues, whether it's called 'Google Money Tree', 'Fast Google Profits' or 'I bought the Brooklin Bridge with my Profits from Google', the scam is the same one. You signup for a service, your credit card is abused and you receive a cd full of worthless articles - then the next month, you get abused again.
This website pretends to be an online newspaper to tout it's GRQ crud. "TheNewYorkTimesOnline" - Really!
STOP PRESS!! 12/08/2009 12:00:00 AM
Google has had enough of this scam and has filed suit against the 'Google Money' scammers. Google says today that the fraudulent websites have been using Google's good name without it's permission or endorsement. Misleading ads try to take advantage of consumers in the midst of a difficult economy, and as the economic situation has worsened, the problem has only grown. As far as we can tell, thousands of people have been tricked into sending payment information and being charged hidden fees by questionable operations. They go on to say that they're working constantly to remove scammy URLs from their index, and will permanently disable AdWords accounts that provide a poor or harmful user experience, whether or not they use Google's trademarks illegally. Read more
Still don't believe me? Take a look at this court filing from Texas it makes fascinating readind and shows that law enforcement DO take an interest in these Internet scammers. Here's a complete analysis of the scam and their duplicate websites from pros.per.ly.
The important thing is to do your research to avoid getting stung. A pretty good rule is this:
If you get an unsolicited email offering you 'work-from-home', hit the 'delete' key- it's almost certainly a scam!
The "Money Mule"
A"money mule" or "money transfer agent" is used to launder funds obtained as a result of phishing and Trojan scams. After being recruited by the fraudsters, money mules receive funds into their accounts and they then withdraw the money and send it overseas using a wire transfer service, minus a commission payment.
Money mules are recruited by a variety of methods, including spam emails, adverts on genuine recruitment web sites, approaches to people with their CVs available online, instant messaging and adverts in newspapers.
Positions on offer sometimes include "Local Representative Needed ", "Shipping Manager", "Financial Manager" or "Sales Manager". They offer you the chance to earn some easy money for a few hours work each week, usually just requiring that you have access to the Internet and a bank account.
Most job scams involve counterfeit checks or bankers drafts - some may be paid directly into the employee's bank account, with instructions to 'send on the rest as soon as possible'. By the time the check has been found to be a fake, the employee has passed on the cash, usually by Western Union (the Scammer's best friend!).
It's very easy to print a check. Sometimes the checks are real - they have just been doctored or reassigned but the money is still stolen.
Remember, if a fake check is paid into your account and you draw on it, YOU are responsible for returning the money to the bank. The Bank will not bail you out!
Job Scams and Money laundering - See BobBear BobBear
For more Job Scam News - see the Suckers Wanted Blog
Seamen's Job Scams Information Here
Cruise Liner Job Scams Information Here