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  • Geebo 9:00 am on March 3, 2021 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: job scam, , , , ,   

    Disadvantaged state taken advantage of by scam 

    Disadvantaged state taken advantage of by scam

    By Greg Collier

    West Virginia is a state that’s been dealing with an unemployment problem since long before the pandemic. Some of its residents could be forgiven for falling prey to a scam that promises not only easy money but a work from home position as well. When someone is desperate enough for a paycheck, they’re more likely to overlook red flags that they may otherwise notice.

    The Better Business Bureau of West Virginia has received several complaints about a company that was allegedly hiring people for a work from home reshipping position. Applicants received items in the mail and were told to take pictures if the items before shipping them off to another address. The employees were told to log into the company’s dashboard to print off the new shipping labels. People received and reshipped things from antique coins to fully assembled computers.

    After about a month went by the employees were locked out of the dashboard and the company cut off all communication with them. None of the people who complained to the BBB were ever paid.

    We’re confident that many of you have already figured out that these people have unfortunately been the victims of the reshipping or repackaging scam. These positions are often advertised online with such titles as ‘shipping coordinator’, ‘warehouse distribution coordinator, or ‘local hub inspector’. The goods that are reshipped are usually bought with stolen credit card information while the scam victims are used as middlemen to ship the goods to third-parties overseas. This is done in an attempt to obfuscate the package’s real destination.

    These victims are little luckier than most. In many cases, the scammers will pay their victims in fraudulent checks which end up costing the victim money. The only thing stolen from these victims so far has been their time. However, there is also a potential for identity theft as the victims also filled out tax forms to the phony employer.

    The reshipping scam is especially dangerous to the victim because it could cause them trouble with the law. Even if you’re a victim of the scam, but you knowingly addressed a package to avoid customs inspections you could find yourself in hot water.

    As with any employment position, it’s worth researching your potential employer as this one used the address of a vacant warehouse in West Virginia.

  • Geebo 9:00 am on January 27, 2021 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: job scam, , , ,   

    Florida man falls victim to reshipping scam 

    Florida man falls victim to reshipping scam

    We’ve discussed the repackaging or reshipping scam previously. Traditionally, scammers will advertise this scam as a work from home position where your job is to inspect packages you receive from the scammers. Then you’d be instructed to send the contents of the packages to a third party. The third party is usually someone overseas. These positions are often advertised online with such titles as ‘shipping coordinator’, ‘warehouse distribution coordinator, or ‘local hub inspector’. More recently, a man from Florida was taken in by these scammers.

    The man had been out of work for months due to the pandemic. He spent months sending out resumes and applications to various employers. He received a job offer from a company for the position of ‘quality control inspector’. The man was asked to inspect 18 packages before sending them overseas. The victim started to become suspicious after he had not been paid for 30 days. He then received a letter from the U.S. Postal Inspection Service warning him that he may be the victim of a reshipping scam.

    This man is actually kind of lucky after being caught up in this scam. In most cases, scammers will pay their victims using phony checks. He could have potentially lost thousands of dollars to the scammers. However, this man is not out of the woods yet. He did send the scammers his personal and financial information for what he believed to be for direct deposit. He could potentially be open to identity theft if it hasn’t happened already.

    The most dangerous part of the reshipping scam is that victims could possibly find themselves in jail. Even if you’re a victim in this scam, if you knowingly falsify shipping documents under the instruction of the scammers to get around US customs, you could face some jail time.

    If you think you may be a victim in a reshipping scam, there are steps you can take. If you’ve already received items don’t mail them. Instead, contact the USPS Postal Inspectors at 1-877-876-2455.

  • Geebo 9:00 am on January 14, 2021 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , job scam,   

    Car wrapping disguises old scam 

    Car wrapping disguises old scam
    What a car wrap may look like

    Wrapping your car in advertisements is similar to the secret shopper scam. While there are legitimate opportunities to make some money by having your car wrapped in advertising, the scammers seem to vastly outnumber the legitimate vendors. The car wrap scammers are actually just using this ploy to find people to use in one of the most common scams of our time.

    The car wrap scam is just an extension of the fake check scam. Scammers will either post an online ad looking for people to have their car wrapped, or they’ll solicit people in the mail. Either way, victims are sent a check and are told to deposit the check in their banking account, so they can pay to have their car wrapped and take some money as payment. Then the victims will be instructed to send any money leftover to the scammers.

    The checks are fake, and if you deposit the check and then spend it, you’ll be responsible for the check’s amount to your bank plus any additional fees. When a bank receives a check as a deposit they’re operating under the assumption that the check is legitimate and the funds should be immediately available. This is especially true if the phony check resembles a legitimate cashier’s check.

    Recently, this scam has started to appear again in different parts of the country. We’ve seen reports from such diverse places as Pittsburgh to rural Alabama. This is a good indicator that the scam could show up in your area sometime soon.

    No legitimate employer will ever ask you to donate a check into your personal bank account that’s not your paycheck. If one does, it’s almost certain to be a scam. A scam that could very well leave you worse off than you might have already been.

  • Geebo 9:00 am on November 6, 2020 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , job scam,   

    Don’t get wrapped up in this job scam 

    Don't get wrapped up in this job scam
    What a wrapped car may look like.

    If you’ve ever spotted a car that was covered in advertising that wasn’t on a racetrack you’ve witnessed what’s known as car wrapping. Some companies will pay people just to drive around with their branding on your vehicle. However, much like the secret shopper scams, there are probably more scam offers for this opportunity than legitimate ones. Recent reports indicate that there is a resurgence in car wrapping scams.

    The car wrapping scam is just another variation of the fake check scam. The scammers will send you a check for more than you’re supposed to be paid. They’ll then instruct you to deposit the check in your bank account and return the overage to them. Once your bank finds out the check is fraudulent after you deposit it, you’d be responsible for the full amount of the check plus whatever overage fees the bank would charge you.

    The car wrapping scam seems to target mostly young people who are looking to make some extra money. A teen in Knoxville, Tennessee was recently sent an unsolicited letter in the mail with the check already enclosed claiming an upfront payment of $700. The check was for $3700.

    A fast-food worker in Charlotte, North Carolina went online to find a way to make extra money and found an ad for a car wrapping gig. She was offered $400 but the check she received was for $3600. She went ahead and deposited the check and sent the remainder back to the scammers.

    Please keep in mind that no legitimate employer will ask you to deposit a check and have you send them money back. If a real company made a mistake like this, they would just cut you a new check.

    Also, real advertisers that hire people for car wrapping opportunities actually have a stringent screening process. They’ll also have detailed information about the opportunity on their website including their physical location.

  • Geebo 8:00 am on October 27, 2020 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , job scam, money orders, mystery shopper, ,   

    New scam switches out fake money orders for checks 

    New scam switches out fake money orders for checks

    One of the more common online scams is the mystery shopper scam. Mystery shopper is a real position. They are people hired by retail outlets to go into their stores and rate the customer service of each individual store. However, the job isn’t as common as most scammers would have you believe.

    In the mystery shopper scam, scammers will pose as these retailers and pretend to hire their victims. The scammers will then send a fake check to the victim and instruct them to deposit the check. The scammers then instruct the victim to go buy some gift cards with the money and the victim can keep what’s leftover. The victim doesn’t often find out they were scammed until the fake check bounces in their bank account and the victim is held responsible by the bank for the difference.

    A report out of North Carolina is claiming that scammers are now using fake US Postal Service money orders instead of fake checks to pull off this scam. While the fake form of payment has changed, the results are still the same. If a victim deposits the phony money orders into their account they will be responsible for the damages once the bank realizes the money orders are fake.

    As we previously stated, mystery shopper is a legitimate position. However, in order to become one, you have to become certified with the Mystery Shoppers Association and you have to contact them. They will never contact anyone out of the blue.

    Also, please keep in mind that no legitimate employer will have you deposit a check or money order into your personal account that’s supposed to be used for business purposes later. This is almost a sure sign of an employment scam.

    If you receive what you suspect is a phony US Postal money order, you can take it to your local post office, and they will be able to determine if it’s real or not.

  • Geebo 8:00 am on August 3, 2020 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: job scam, , ,   

    $600 Federal unemployment benefit has expired 

    $600 Federal unemployment benefit has expired

    If you’re currently collecting unemployment benefits, you might discover that your next payment could be smaller than it has been. As of this past Friday, July 31, 2020, the Federal unemployment benefit of $600 per week has expired. The Senate had been working on extending these benefits but decided to allow the benefits to expire before approving any extension. This will leave approximately 30 million Americans who are currently collecting unemployment benefits to struggle even more to try to make ends meet. As of the time of this posting, there is no definitive time table as to when the benefits could be extended.

    Unfortunately, we can’t offer any advice on to make up for that $600 loss outside of maybe putting some of your clutter up for sale on Geebo.com. You never know who may want to pay you for that thing you’ve been looking to get out of your home. Ad listings are free. However, we can offer advice on how to keep the money you already have.

    This is going to be a perfect time for scammers to strike. With so many people desperate to find work or a place to live, it’s almost a guarantee that scammers will be looking for new victims.

    When it comes to job scams, be leery of any offer that sounds too good to be true. Avoid depositing any checks that phony employers will say is for supplies or equipment. Avoid any positions for secret shoppers or repackaging positions that are disguised with titles like ‘shipping coordinator’ or ‘warehouse redistribution coordinator’.

    Where housing is concerned, once again, it’s best to avoid any listing that sounds too good to be true. If the rent is significantly lower than the average market price, it’s probably best to avoid that listing. If a landlord refuses to show you the property for any reason including social distancing, it’s more than likely a scam. If the supposed landlord asks for payment in something unusual like gift cards, wire service, or cryptocurrency that will probably be a scam listing.

    I’m sure all of us are either affected by the current economic situation or know someone who is. If you’re in a position to, maybe reach out and offer to help someone you know. It doesn’t have to be financial assistance necessarily. Sometimes just the offer of a helping hand can be enough.

    • We need to stop playing politics 2:10 pm on August 3, 2020 Permalink

      I am out of work due to corona I work for the school district don’t know if I am going back next month or if I will be on the unemployment line my wages will stop and I will probably have to go on unemployment my wages are low so if I do go on unemployment I will be making less than I brought home from my job which was 30 hours a week my bring home pay for two weeks is $495 no one gave me any help and if I go on employment sure if I’m gonna get up then either just saying $600 extra week is more than I bring home Although people making much more than that for six months got $600 extra a week what about the people that are just now applying for unemployment shouldn’t they be entitled to an extra $600 for the first six months of unemployment we’re talking about being fair to all Americans I would love to have an answerWe need to stop playing politics and start taking care of the people that are putting you in your not making matters any easier for people that in homes I may lose their jobs after the $600 a month is over how fair is that

  • Geebo 8:00 am on July 6, 2020 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: job scam, ,   

    BBB: Job seekers at risk now more than ever 

    BBB: Job seekers at risk now more than ever

    The Better Business Bureau recently released the results of a survey that does not bode well for people currently looking for work. According to the BBB, people are now more at risk of falling for various employment scams, especially for those looking to work from home. These scams have various goals. They can be looking just to steal your personal information or getting you to deposit and then spend a fraudulent check.

    The scammers try to appear like a legitimate business as much as possible. They’ll often try to make it look like they’re hiring for a legitimate retailer like Walmart or Amazon. They will also hold online interviews over Zoom or Skype and have official-looking emails.

    People who have fallen for these scams have reported losing on average $1400. One report even indicates that military families and veterans are hit particularly hard by these scams.

    That’s not to say that there aren’t ways to protect yourselves from these scams. If they ask you to deposit a check they sent you for supplies and tell you to purchase the supplies from a specific vendor, that’s more than likely a scam. You should not deposit the check because it’s probably a fake and you could be responsible for that money to your bank.

    Beware of positions like ‘warehouse redistribution coordinator’ or anything similar. These positions could have you sending stolen goods through the mail which could get you in trouble with the law.

    Also, if a job asks you to buy or distribute gift cards, that’s almost guaranteed to be a scam. Due to the virtual anonymity of gift cards, they’ve become the preferred form of money laundering for scammers.

    Even when looking for a job if it sounds too good to be true it probably is.

    While there are legitimate work from home positions available, that sector of the job market is a large target for scammers.

  • Geebo 8:00 am on June 26, 2020 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , job scam,   

    Job scams affect college students too 

    Job scams affect college students too

    When we think of scams, we often think of the elderly being the targets of scammers. However, college-age people are just as susceptible to scams as older generations. Some reports say it’s due to their lack of experience in dealing with such scams while others say it’s because their generation is more trusting. Either way, they have become very lucrative for various types of scammers.

    For example, a young college student who lives in Arizona was recently taken for over $3000 in a job scam. The student attends college at a Midwestern University but is currently home for the summer and was looking for a job. She received a job offer from someone that appeared to be a faculty member at her university. The email address was even said to have the .edu identifier in it.

    The job they offered her is a familiar one when it comes to scams. They would send her a check, she would deposit it in her own bank account, then buy supplies from a designated supplier. She was then instructed to keep $400 of the check as her payment.

    It was after she made all the payments that the check she was sent turned out to be a fraudulent check. She was then responsible to her bank for the entire amount of the $3,550 check. As it turned out, her university’s email had been compromised and scammers were using it to lure several students into the scam.

    The fake check scam is at the heart of several different scams from job scams to purchase scams. No legitimate employer will ever ask you to donate a check into your personal bank account outside of your pay. If one does, it’s almost certain to be a scam. A scam that could very well leave you worse off than you might have already been.

  • Geebo 8:04 am on June 24, 2020 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , job scam, , , ,   

    Warnings issued about illegal job scam 

    Warnings issued about illegal job scam

    With so many Americans still looking for employment during this time of record job losses, the Better Business Bureau has issued a warning about an employment scam that could land the victim in hot water. We’re, of course, referring to the reshipping or repackaging scam.

    The online job listing may say that the position is called ‘shipping coordinator’, ‘warehouse redistribution coordinator’, or something similar. In some cases, the scammers even pose as major retailers like Amazon or Walmart. The scammers will tell you that you can work at home and all you have to do is receive packages in the mail, inspect the contents for damages before shipping them to a different address.

    The problem with this is that the goods are usually purchased with stolen credit card information and you’re helping the scammers transfer stolen goods across the country. People who have been unknowingly conned into taking part in the scam have even faced jail time. For example, if you were instructed to lie on US Customs Service forms for packages leaving the country, you could be charged with fraud.

    If you do escape the long arm of the law, you could still find yourself the victim of identity theft or worse. Since the scammers are posing as legitimate employers, they will ask you for personal information including bank account information for phony direct deposits. Or they could disguise paying you by sending you a falsified check. This is when the scammers will say the check is for more than they meant to send you and will ask you to send the difference back. Of course, after you deposit the check and send the difference back to the scammers your bank will discover the check is a fake and you’ll be responsible for the amount of the check to your bank. So in the end, you’ll actually be deeper in debt than when you started the ‘job’.

    If you think you may be a victim in a reshipping scam there are steps you can take. If you’ve already received items don’t mail them. Instead, contact the USPS Postal Inspectors at 1-877-876-2455.

  • Geebo 8:00 am on June 10, 2020 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , , , job scam, , ,   

    A new series of scams to look out for 

    A new series of scams to look out for

    Here are some new scams that we’ve found out about that are going on around the country. Please keep in mind that just because they are not currently happening in your area doesn’t mean that they can’t.

    Another victim has been scammed through the freelancer platform Upwork. In Pennsylvania, a woman had accepted an editing position that she had found on Upwork. She was sent a check for $2000 by her ’employer’ in order to buy equipment for her position. She was then instructed to send what wasn’t spent back to her employer through Venmo and gift cards. The $2000 check later turned out to be fraudulent. Upwork has said that you should not communicate with a client outside of the Upwork platform. If you receive a check in the mail and are asked to send a balance back through untraceable means like Venmo or gift cards, it’s almost a guarantee that the job is a scam.

    In Northern California, at least one resident has reported a new scam that had happened to them. They say they received a text message where a cybercriminal claimed that they had total control of the victim’s cell phone including the microphone and camera. The scammer then tried to extort $1500 in cryptocurrency out of the person they texted. The odds are very slim that your phone will be hijacked in this way. That’s also not taking into account that when you pay a purported blackmailer like this, they will continue to try and squeeze as much money out of you as possible. If you receive a text like this you are asked to report it to the Federal Trade Commission.

    Lastly, in Tulsa, Oklahoma man fell for a customer service scam that left him out of $1500. The man was having issues with his Cash App account. He called what he thought was Cash App’s customer service department but was actually a scammer. Before it was all over, the man’s Cash App account had been drained by the scammers. In this day and age of everything being online, not every company has a customer service number you can call. Often scammers take advantage of this by advertising phony customer service numbers. If you need to contact a company for customer service, go directly to that company’s website and look for a link that either says ‘contact us’ or ‘support’. Don’t just do a web search for ‘company x’s customer service number’ as there’s a good chance that number could be fake.

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