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Your Questions About Apartment Address On Resume

February 25, 2013

Helen asks…

Information about possible scammers?

Ok, I went on Craigslist to look for a job and sent a resume for a baby sitting position. I assumed that this family lived in my area, but it turns out that they are in Ireland and relocating to my area on May 7th.

They want me to clean they’re apartment and buy groceries and appliances a day or two before they arrive. According to them, they were going to have their landlord send me the apartment keys in the mail, and mail me a $3000 check for my first week of work, cleaning products, and their food/ appliances.

At first I was scared that this was a scam, after I found out all of this information. Then, I just ignored it. Who’s going to trust someone they don’t know with that kind of money and keys to their house?

I am now sitting at home with a $3000 check on the table. Apparently his financier has sent this to me, as planned. I looked at the check thoroughly. There is a water mark on the back, and the bank that it came from does exist. The check kind of looks like a money order. Everything is printed on there. The very top says:
“This document has a colored background and microprinting. The reverse side includes an artificial watermark.”

**Note the word “artificial”. Im not sure what that means, but doesn’t sound good. I don’t even have any of my own personal checks to compare it to.

Below that it says:
“Panjiva Inc
20 West 22nd Street, Suite 801
New York, NY 10010″

and beside that says:
“Comerica Bank
333 Santa Clara St
San Jose, CA 95113″

The only thing personalized was the outside of the envelope that it came in. I have the financier’s name and address, in his handwriting, I hope. But I just refuse to deposit it into my bank, for fear something bad will come out of it. It’s all getting too real for me. Does anyone else think that this is fishy? What are the risks here? Please give any information you may have about this situation.

Administrator answers:

100% scam.

There is no job.

There is only a scammer trying to steal your hard-earned money.

The next email was from one of the scammer’s fake names and free email addresses pretending to be the “secretary/assistant/accountant” and has demanded you cash a large fake check sent on a stolen UPS/FedEx billing account number and send most of the “money” via Western Union or moneygram back to the scammer posing as the “supply company” while you “keep” a small portion. When your bank realizes the check is fake and it bounces, you get the real life job of paying back the bank for the bounced check fees and all the bank’s money you sent to an overseas criminal.

Western Union and moneygram do not verify anything on the form the sender fills out, not the name, not the street address, not the country, not even the gender of the receiver, it all means absolutely nothing. The clerk will not bother to check ID and will simply hand off your cash to whomever walks in the door with the MTCN# and question/answer. Neither company will tell the sender who picked up the cash, at what store location or even in what country your money walked out the door. Neither company has any kind of refund policy, money sent is money gone forever.

When you refuse to send him your cash he will send increasingly nasty and rude emails trying to convince you to go through with his scam. The scammer could also create another fake name and email address like “FBI@ gmail.com”, “police_person @hotmail.com” or “investigator @yahoo.com” and send emails telling you the job is legit and you must cash the fake check and send your money to the scammer or you will face legal action. Just ignore, delete and block those email addresses. Although, reading a scammer’s attempt at impersonating a law enforcement offical can be extremely funny.

Now that you have responded to a scammer, you are on his ‘potential sucker’ list, he will try again to separate you from your cash. He will send you more emails from his other free email addresses using another of his fake names with all kinds of stories of great jobs, lottery winnings, millions in the bank and desperate, lonely, sexy singles. He will sell your email address to all his scamming buddies who will also send you dozens of fake emails all with the exact same goal, you sending them your cash via Western Union or moneygram.

You could post up the email address that the scammer is using, it will help make your post more googlable for other suspicious potential victims to find when looking for information.

Do you know how to check the header of a received email? If not, you could google for information. Being able to read the header to determine the geographic location an email originated from will help you weed out the most obvious scams and scammers. Then delete and block that scammer. Don’t bother to tell him that you know he is a scammer, it isn’t worth your effort. He has one job in life, convincing victims to send him their hard-earned cash.

Whenever suspicious or just plain curious, google everything, website addresses, names used, companies mentioned, phone numbers given, all email addresses, even sentences from the emails as you might be unpleasantly surprised at what you find already posted online. You can also post/ask here and every scam-warner-anti-fraud-busting site you can find before taking a chance and losing money to a scammer.

6 “Rules to follow” to avoid most fake jobs:
1) Job asks you to use your personal bank account and/or open a new one.
2) Job asks you to print/mail/cash a check or money order.
3) Job asks you to use Western Union or moneygram in any capacity.
4) Job asks you to accept packages and re-ship them on to anyone.
5) Job asks you to pay visas, travel fees via Western Union or moneygram.
6) Job asks you to sign up for a credit reporting or identity verification site.

Avoiding all jobs that mention any of the above listed ‘red flags’ and you will miss nearly all fake jobs. Only scammers ask you to do any of the above. No. Exceptions. Ever. For any reason.

If you google “fake check cashing job”, “fraud Western Union scam”, “money mule moneygram scam” or something similar you will find hundreds of posts from victims and near-victims of this type of scam.

Shred the check, in some places having a fake check is illegal, even if the check is marked “void” and/or “fake”. Ignore and block all emails from all the email addresses of that scammer.

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