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Scammers are everywhere, including posing as job placement companies

Los Angeles Times file illustration

A reader: I was on a well-known employment website and I posted a résumé. Then I received an email from a person offering a logisitics manager job where they ship you goods and you ship them elsewhere. Is this a real job offer?

FBEE 2020 BLAIR LOONEY circle

Action Line: These kinds of offers will generally promise that you can make lots of money. With the reshipping scam, the scammers will ask you to receive packages and reship them to another destination. Mostly, the destination will be out of the United States. I would venture a guess that if you inspect the merchandise you are asked to reship, you’ll find that it was purchased from legitimate businesses with stolen credit cards. I’d also like to add that reshipping merchandise from your home is not what I would consider a logistics manager.

While there are many legitimate job placement companies that you could choose, job placements scams are on the rise. Here are some tips from the Federal Trade Commission that will help you find a good company:

▪ If a company or organization is mentioned in an ad or interview, contact that company to find out if the company really is hiring through the service.

▪ Ask the cost, what you will get and who pays (You or the company that hires you?). What happens if the service doesn’t find a job for you or any real leads? If they’re reluctant to answer your questions, or give confusing answers, you should be reluctant to work with them.

▪ Get a copy of the contract with the placement firm, and carefully read it. A legitimate company will give you time to read the contract, not pressure you into signing then and there. Make sure any promises – including refund promises – are in writing. Some listing services and “consultants” write ads to sound like jobs, but that’s just a marketing trick: They’re really selling general information about getting a job – information you can find for free on your own.

▪ BBB can tell you whether any complaints have been filed about a company. Just keep in mind that a lack of complaints doesn’t mean the business is on the up-and-up. You may want to do an internet search with the name of the company and words like review, scam or complaint. Look through several pages of search results. And check out news articles about the company, as well.

Bonus tip about protecting your privacy: Never give anyone your bank account or credit card info. Unscrupulous companies, including those advertising job placement help, use the promise of direct deposit to try to get your account information. You should contact your bank immediately and close the accounts if you have already given your information.

Action Line is written by Blair Looney, president and CEO for the Better Business Bureau serving Central California. Send your consumer concerns, questions and problems to Action Line at the Better Business Bureau, 2600 W. Shaw Lane, Fresno, CA 93711 or info@cencal.bbb.org.

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