We’re in a recession and it seems that a few enterprising scamsters have gone on the prowl hoping to trick people looking for work into accepting bogus jobs.
I recently had an email from Insider’s Edge reader Michael who received an email from a company called Source & Resource Ltd offering him work. I’ve had a look at the format of the emails these guys have been sending out and I have to say they’ve got a very clever sales pitch.
For sums which vary between £1,500 and £2,300 a month they offer job with working hours of between 2-3 hours a day (Monday to Friday). Other perks include dental care, health care, 4 weeks paid holiday per year. Luckily for us, Michael thought it sounded too good to be true so he did some sleuth work for us. He looked up Source & Resource Ltd on Companies House and guess what? They were listed as: “Active – Proposal to Strike off”.
What does that mean in plain English?
Well it either means that they’ve failed to fill in their annual return or they haven’t submitted it to Companies House and they’re now effectively seen as being ‘defunct’. It’s possible that they’ve actually applied to be struck off themselves if they haven’t been trading for 3 months. Either way this is not the kind of company who is in a position to offer legitimate work to anyone.
Speaking of which there’s a section on their website called ‘Frequently Ask Questions’. One of the questions is: “Is it a legitimate job?”
Here’s what they say:
“Our business activity is certified by major operators and publishing houses in the international market. You are welcome to browse our website and follow the link to Our Partners to see certificates and feedback from numerous well-known companies, as well as extracts from our news reports.”
Michael did some stellar sleuthing work and contacted the so-called ‘partners’ displayed on their website to see if they could shed any light on the matter. It seems they’ve mysteriously never even heard of Source & Resource Ltd… except from others enquirers contacting them to see if they were real.
I’ve done a little more digging myself and there are scores of people who have been contacted by these guys and are being offered the same, or a similar deal. It looks like they’ve been sweeping email addresses off job websites such as TotalJobs, Monster and major recruitment websites. Interestingly the emails they’ve been sending out to people have come from a gmail address, rather than a company address, which does raise some alarm bells.
Why a Gmail address? Apparently according to one forum user they told him: “we are required to use Gmail every time we are contacting new people, due to SPAM problem we had recently.”
Hmmm… not heard that one before!
Rather more worrying was the nature of the work on offer which is described as:
“Your main job would be monitoring your on-line Task Manager, which you’ll create on our site once you’re employed. Once the funds enter your account, your supervisor will notify you and assign you your tasks for the day. At this point you would go to your bank, withdraw the funds and transfer them using Western Union or Money Gram, as instructed by your supervisor. We provide quick, easy, efficient and secure ways for businesses to out source services locally, nationally and globally to maximize their competitive advantage and cost effectiveness.”
Right, so you’re paid £1,500 a month to put cash transfers through Western Union or Money Gram on a daily basis. Maybe someones slipped gin in my tea but that sounds suspiciously like money laundering to me.
I did one more check and that was on their website itself. I want to see if it had been flagged anywhere as being ‘dodgy’. Here’s what it came up with:
It’s written in quite small writing so in case you can’t see, it’s coming up as a potential “Fake site / scam”
So let’s look at the evidence…
– According to Companies House this outfit is defunct
– Their so-called partners have never heard of them
– They send emails to people registered on job sites via an untraceable Gmail address
– The job appears to involve withdrawing and wiring cash (presumably overseas)
– The website has been flagged as a ‘scam’
Well, I don’t know about you but I’ve rather take temp work off our good friend and Reverend in Nigeria. At least he doesn’t beat around the bush and asks for your bank details up front.
In short: STEER WELL CLEAR FOLKS.
Avoid this one like it’s a plague of plague-carrying locusts plaguing the town red.