There seems to be no end to the shady job offers for me to delve into. This time, I received a job offer via email that was ambiguously described as “transaction operations and customer service”. I responded and here’s what happened…
I decided to research this job offer because I have been receiving more and more of them lately and they are all very similar. In fact, I received two of these in the same day. Interestingly, one was addressed to and from a Sharon with a different last name and the other was addressed to and from a Roy with a different last name (Roy is my husband’s name). It certainly looked suspicious (how often do you get legitimate job offers via email out of the blue from total strangers?). I had some ideas about what this was really about. Let’s see if I was right.
From: sharon.c.someone To: sharon.someoneelse Sent: Friday, July 24, 2009 1:34 AM Subject: part time position for USA resident Hello! Our company is looking for dynamic individuals to be responsible for the area of transaction operations, customer service. This job requires punctuality, good organizational skills and some computer skills with microsoft office programs. We have started recruitment of new sales represetatives whose work includes distribution of funds received for sold items and paying fees to the suppliers. many customers prefer to receive money for the product we purchase from them through fast payment systems using their empowered person's assistance so our represetative's work requires receiving and sending send such payments. When we sell something sales represetative receives the payment from our customer and the main task for agent is to forward the funds to our representative via bank transfer. These procedures let us to gain the main advantage over our competitors. Our financial manager will be able to handle the payments in many states all over the USA significantly accelerating the whole payment process. This work is rather simple but sales representative should be very honest and responsible person. It will take just few hours per day several times per week. The salary is calculated on percent basis. Sales representative receives transaction fee, that commonly is 5% of each successfully forwarded payment. The salary can be retrieved immediately after the payment has been sent agent's account. Average sales represetative's salary is $1500-2500. This job would take 10-15 hours a week. If you wish to join our team you should just let us know sending an email to: email@example.com and you will be sent an application form shortly. You should fill the form and send back to us. Your application form will be examined within few business days and you will receive our decision after that. Usually we do not decline and give a chance to everyone to try this occupation with the only exclusion if we find unsettled debts in your credit history or criminal records. we highlight security questions because big amount are usually sent. if you have any additional questions feel free to send an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org with word 'vacancy' specified in subject field.
One thing I noticed is something that is common to many scams: Awkward grammar. This is always a bad sign. Also, the whole thing just doesn’t make any sense. With international banking being what it is, there should be no reason for a third party to have to get involved to take a company’s payments for them. It looks like this is a money laundering scheme or an identity theft scam. Only one way to find out…
I sent an inquiry and within 12 hours received a response:
Hello! please fill out an application form attached to this email, scan it and email it back. Application processing usually takes one business day and, after positive decision, you will receive an employment agreement to sign. Have a great day! Truly Yours, Deputy Director Oleg
This is a pretty lengthy application and at first glance it looks like this might be a real job. But then I notice that it asks for your Social Security number as well as your driver’s license number. Once they have that, they have your identity.
Just kidding. Of course I won’t. I may as well include my bank account information if I did that. I wonder how many people fall for this though. At least I know that you won’t be one of them.