Archives for August 2012

Scam Job Emails And How To Identify Them

Working from home is becoming very popular nowsdays. There are stories about people making thousands of dollars a month by just sitting in front of the computer a few hours a day. Are these stories true? Few are but majority are make-ups to lure you into a trap. Nothing in the world is for free. Many home-based jobs are just too good to be true.

Everyone wants to earn big money without going to work. Most students or stay-at-home moms want extra cash to pay their fees or bills. Because the number of home based jobs is increasing everyday, it is no surprise that work-at-home scams offering online work that reap big financial gains have also grown in popularity. With the advance of technology, we can now contact people easily by email without revealing who we are and that is what most scammers do today. Scammers love to lay their bait through emails because it is very easy hard to be caught.

In this article, I would like to identify a few features of a scam job email so that you will not fall into the trap if you happens to see one next time.

1. Transfer Money

Some jobs will ask you to be the middle man to help transfer the money over to your bank account with you getting a huge percentage of it. However, when you proceed to ask more about the deal, you will be asked to provide your bank details and that is when the catch comes in. NEVER GIVE YOUR BANK DETAILS TO ANYONE!

2. Upfront Investment

Many home-based jobs actually ask you to pay first. Whether is it a signup fee or for whatever purpose, it works like an MLM and your job is to get as many people involved as possible. If you are paying for something, make sure you are getting something usable back. It is illegal to pay for something without getting anything usable.

3. Not Specific / Too Good To Be True

Jobs that offer great rewards with you putting in the minimal effort are usually scams. I got an email recently about a job in flowerland. The email stated that you do not need to be skilled in anyway to earn high wages. The description of the company was obscure. Also, the email did not say what you are required to do. I have attached the email as follows:

FlowerLand International is an American trading corporation. We specialize in all kinds of plants and decorative greenery that can be used for home or office. We are not a Multi-Level-Marketing company nor any similarity. You are never required to buy nor invest anything to work with Flowerland International. We are not a (MLM,Multi-Level-Marketing) organization nor any similarity. You are never required to buy nor invest anything to work with Flowerland International.

CAREER POSITION:
This is an entry level opportunity in the field of banking services.

MAIN ADVANTAGES:
– Really High Wages.
– Ability to work at home.
– Flexible shedule.
– No sign up fees, no investment is needed.
– All expenses such as phone calls, webtraffic, etc will be fully covered by our company.
– IllnessDisability friendly team.

REQUIREMENTS FOR EMPLOYEES:
– Basic knowledge of credit principles, financial services and operations.
– Ability to work on multiple projects simultaneously along with meeting deadlines.
– Ability to work independently or in a team environment.
– Having no problem with the Authorities.
– Having a cellular phone.
– Having a deep desire to achieve financial success.

DEGREE:
No degree required.

HOW TO Begin:
Please send your resume to our personnel manager.
It must be sent in a TXT, MSWord, RTF or PDF format.

Please write to the following email: flowerlandint[a]yahoo.com. In order to receive our response, please provide us with your valid email address.

3. Unknown Source

This is the most important and critical check – that is why I left it to the last. If someone tells you that they found you through the internet, you better not believe them. The scammers probably send the same mail to millions of people hoping for someone to reply. Check the sender’s email. If the email is an yahoo, gmail or some free mails, you can delete the mail immediately because a reputable company will never use a free email address. The flowerland scam shown above just reflected that. If the email is from a company, go the url and check out the website. You can do so easily by extracting the text after the @ symbol.

Conclusion

I hope this email can shed some light on how to identify a home-based job fraud. There are many more ways to do it and I’ve only listed a few important ones. With fradulent emails growing everday, more people might be cheated. Many people deceived by job scams have lost alot of their hard earned money, in addition to effort and time. Lets hope you are not one of them.

About The Author
Sitecritic Web Resource is a non-profit organization that provides unbiased web reviews, articles and internet resources for the web community.

http://sitecritic.net

Stranded Parishioner: Church Scam

by: Caitlin Dempsey

My pastor was sitting in his office the other day when a call came through to the parish office requesting to speak to him. The call started out friendly, “Hi, my name is Mike Donnelly! My wife, Cathy and I are parishioners. Do you remember us? We come to Mass with our two teenage children.”

Series of Misfortunes

The caller then went on to explain explain that his family had to travel to Chicago as a result of his father-in-law’s sudden illness. “Do you remember me telling you about my wife’s father’s serious illness right before Christmas”, the caller asked. “I have bad news to tell you, my father-in-law just passed away.” After the priest expressed his condolences over the recent death, the caller then went on “Yes, Father, I have even more bad news to tell you.” The caller then went on to explain that his wallet had been stolen by a thief and that now his family was stranded in Chicago without money or a way to get home.

The Scam

The caller then went on to explain that all he needed was for the pastor to go to his house to pick up some cash that he had at home and to wire it to him in Chicago. Feeling uneasy about going to a home that wasn’t his own, the priest asked that the caller phone the police to provide the priest with an escort to the house. “Oh no, Father! I’ve already tried the police and they won’t help me. What about if you “lend” me the money and I will pay you back when I return home?”

Fortunately, the pastor’s common sense prevailed over his strong desire to help the stranded parishioner. The details of the tale of misfortune didn’t make sense: why did the wife have her own wallet to help the family home. A search of the parish rolls revealed that no parishioner by the name of Mike and Cathy Donnelly existed. When the priest informed the caller that he wouldn’t be able to help him without the police being notified, the caller cheerily rang off saying, “That’s okay, father! I’ll see you when I get back”.

The Many Lives of the Scam

My pastor was not alone in receiving such a call. This scam has been perpetuated among many different churches around the United States. The specifics of the tale change but the modus operandi is always the same. The caller first establishes a rapport with the pastor, claming to be a parishioner of the church. He then spins a tale of woe about some event that has gone wrong. A review of the logs of one gay church showed that the caller is always struck with AIDS. Lastly, the caller pleads for the pastor to help him out financially in order to get the stranded parishioner home.

About The Author
Caitlin Dempsey is the editor of http://TheCatholicGuide.com, a resource for finding about Catholicism, the Faith and Catholic Life.

The Biggest SEO Scam of All

by: Cari Haus

While there are many ethical SEO firms serving Internet users today, a few notorious practitioners also exist. One of them called me just the other day.

“We can get your site to be number one in the search engines for the top 20 search terms you choose,” promised the telemarketer. I don’t usually give telemarketers the time of day, but somehow found this fellow to be intriguing. It was a cold and snowy day in Michigan right at the moment, and somehow I felt warmer just hearing him glow about the sunshine beaming through his own office windows.

“Show me results,” I requested. So we cruised the web together, and he showed me some client sites that really did have top rankings. At first glance the sales spiel sounded rather inviting, but after taking some time to consider and evaluate his company, I determined that what this friendly young salesman offered was nothing more than a scam.

As I did my homework, several red flags jumped out at me. By researching his company on the Internet, I learned that they employed no less than 250 telemarketers soliciting SEO clients on a continual basis. With all due respect to the size of this company, I found it hard to believe that they could service the numerous SEO clients they were recruiting in a very meaningful way.

I asked the salesman about this the next time he called. He informed me that their SEO service was highly automated, built on proprietary technology that was so ahead of its time that no other firm could compete. In case you didn’t catch it, the previous sentence contained red flag #2. In the words of the old adage, “if it sounds too good to be true, it probably it.”

The above was only the tip of the iceberg, however. Upon further questioning of my enthusiastic sales contact, I learned that it wasn’t really my url that they wanted to promote. Their plan was much more beneficial–for themselves, that is. They would set-up urls to be doorway pages to my website. Their urls, not mine, would be optimized to get high in the search engines. They would maintain control of and ownership of the urls, so if I ever went out of business, they could sell all that traffic—and value I had paid so dearly for—to one of my competitors. Pretty nice deal for them. I pay them big bucks on an annual basis to drive traffic to a url which they—not me–own. Of course, I would benefit from whatever sales came through their url as long as I continued to ante up cash.

I had a good friend who fell prey to this scheme a few years back. An unscrupulous SEO “specialist” talked her into paying big bucks for a website with a url which the SEO firm owned and controlled. The SEO firm then billed my friend much more than they had originally contracted for. When she balked at the bill, they threatened to shut down traffic to the site.

While this firm also promised hordes of traffic and top search engine listings, the only significant traffic my friend ever got was garnered through pay-per-click. To make matters worse, the SEO firm hid links to their sites throughout the html of her website.

Another fault I found with the SEO firm mentioned first in this article was the search terms they crowed about taking first place for. To say the least, they were rather obscure. It’s a pretty impressive accomplishment to come up first on the web for the search term “furniture” or even “log furniture”. But if you design a page that brings up your company first on Google for a search of “Birmingham Tuscaloosa Avenue Dry Cleaners”, big deal. And that’s what this SEO firm was doing.

Although I never seriously considered dropping $3000 or whatever it was for their services, the final clincher came when I asked what type of traffic I could expect for digging into my pockets.

“I can get you an average of 100 hits per day,” he told me. Then he showed me stats on some of their clients sites that had, over the course of a year, built up to 100 hits per day. I don’t know about you, but I want a lot more than 100 unique hits per day on my website. I’ve achieved those kinds of numbers—and better—by myself. Why should I pay them for what I consider to be mediocre results?

Don’t get me wrong. I do believe in SEO firms, and because of the success I’ve been having on some of my top search terms, may engage in that business myself someday. But after researching the issues carefully, I would warn fellow webmasters to beware of any SEO firm that:

employs a boiler room full of telemarketers
automates most or all of their services
insists on gaining and retaining control of the url to be promoted
focuses on lengthy and obscure search strings
touts sites that are garnering a mere 100 hits per day as examples of their success.
Of all the bad practices mentioned above, the one I found most offensive was the idea that the SEO firm should own or control my url. While owning the url would seem like a good idea for the SEO firm (they could always collect their fees by threatening to shut down the site), it isn’t so nifty for the client. If I pay a firm to build my business, I want them to do just that—build my business. To pay a firm to build traffic to a url they own is really like paying them to build their business—and that, in my opinion, is the biggest SEO scam of all.

Copyright 2005 Log Cabin Rustics

About The Author
Cari Haus has been successfully selling rustic log furniture and beds on the Internet since 1997. Copyright 2005 by Cari Haus, website http://www.logcabinrustics.com/. Permission is granted to reprint this article, either online or in written publications, as long as the copyright information, this paragraph, and a link address or a link to the Log Cabin Rustics website is attached at the end of the article.

Don’t Fall For The Latest Internet Identity Theft Scam

by: Tim Knox

Q: I use PayPal to accept credit cards for my online collectibles business. I recently received an email that my PayPal account was going to expire in five days if I didn’t click a link in the email and give them my PayPal account information. Being naturally paranoid I decided not to give this information and I’m happy to say that my PayPal account did not expire. Was this a scam? — Brenda A.

A: Be thankful that your paranoia kicked in, Brenda, because you were about to fall victim to the scam of the week, this one aimed at the 35 million merchants and individuals who use Paypal.com as their online payment processor.

The email you received was not from PayPal, but from an Internet bad guy behind a forged email address using the PayPal.com domain. You should understand that no reputable online company will ever ask you to provide your account information. Think about it. They already have this information. Why would they ask you to provide it.

Since I use PayPal for several of my online ventures, I, too, received the email in question. The email first seeks to instill fear in you by saying that your PayPal account will be closed if you do not provide personal information. You are then directed to open an attached executable file and enter your PayPal account information and other personal information that PayPal doesn’t even require, including your social security number, checking and savings account information, driver’s license number, and other personal information that can be used to clean out your PayPal account and perhaps even steal your identity.

If you’re not familiar with PayPal, it is a hugely successful, web-based company (purchased by eBay in 2002) that many online retailers and eBay sellers use to accept electronic payments for everything from newsletter subscriptions to consulting services to just about any product for sale on eBay.

The allure of PayPal is that it does not require the seller to have a bank merchant account through which to process credit cards. Anyone with a verifiable email address and bank account can use PayPal and the service can be implemented almost immediately after registering. When someone places an order on a website that uses PayPal for online payments, that customer is directed to PayPal.com to complete the payment process using a credit card or electronic check. The merchant can transfer the money collected in his PayPal account to his checking account any time he likes. Since many larger merchants make this transfer just once a week or so, their PayPal accounts are ripe for the picking from those who have the cunning and lack of ethics required to gain access.

The shear number of PayPal customers is one reason it has become a popular target of scam artists trying to steal personal information from individuals and businesses alike. Identify theft is on the rise. Thanks to the Internet stealing someone’s identity has never been easier. At any given moment, there are any number of Internet thieves using all manner of high tech wizardry to steal personal and business information from unsuspecting souls, and many times they can gain access to this information simply by asking the person to provide it through fraudulent means.

The PayPal scam is just the latest in a long line of sophisticated attempts to steal personal information through online means, Amazon, eBay, Dell Computer, and many others have been the brunt of many such scams in recent years.

Identity theft is what’s known as “a knowledge crime,” which means that the criminal doesn’t have to break into your house to rob you blind. If you have a bank account and a social security number, you are susceptible to identity theft.

While most people are familiar with identity theft, most business men and women never think about it happening to them, at least on a professional level. Consider this: if a criminal can learn your business checking account number or the number of your company credit card, they can steal far more from your business than if they had simply knocked down the door and carted off your desk.

The Internet aside, most business and personal identity theft is still the result of stolen wallets and dumpster diving. You should guard your business records closely and be very careful what you throw away. Stop and think for a moment what a criminal might find in the dumpster behind your office.

There’s a good chance that dumpster has, at various times, contained scraps of paper with your social security number, driver’s license number, credit card number, old ATM cards, telephone calling cards, and other pieces of vital business information like bank statements, invoices, and purchase orders. A dumpster-diving thief could literally rob your business blind in a matter of hours.

Here are a few ways to protect yourself from business and personal identity theft.

· Never give out your first name, last name, business name, email address, account passwords, credit card numbers, bank account information, PIN number, social security number, or driver’s license number.

· Change your online account passwords every 30 days. Believe it or not, a hacker who steals your personal information can guess your online account passwords in about two minutes. If your Charles Schwab online account password is your birthday or the name of your first born or family pet, count on a hacker cracking that code faster than you can say “Bill Gates.”

· Never provide personal information in response to an email or telephone call. Just because someone calls and says they are from Dunn & Bradstreet and need to confirm your business information does not mean they are really from Dunn & Bradstreet.

· Never give your business credit card number over the phone to place an order with someone who has called you unsolicited. If you are interested in what they are selling get their number, check out their company, then call them back to place the order.

If you think that you have become the victim of identity theft or think someone is trying to steal your identity or personal information you should report them immediately to the Federal Trade Commission. You will find more information on their website at http://www.consumer.gov/idtheft/. For more information on what to do if identity theft happens to you visit http://www.privacyrights.org/fs/fs17a.htm.

So, if you ever receive an email from PayPal, Amazon, eBay, or any other ecommerce website asking you to update your account information by email you can pretty much bet the farm that it is a scam.

Here’s to your success.

Tim Knox, Founder For more information on starting your own online business visit http://www.dropshipwholesale.net, the website for online entrepreneurs.

About The Author
Tim Knox
Entrepreneur, Author, Speaker
http://www.prosperityandprofit.com
http://www.dropshipwholesale.net
http://www.smallbusinessqa.com
http://www.timknox.com

 

Pharming – Another New Scam

by: Gary Gresham

Pharming is one of the latest online scams and rapidly growing threat that has been showing up on the Internet. It’s a new way for criminals to try to get into your computer so they can steal your personal data.

Phishing and pharming are related online scams but pharming has evolved into a much more sophisticated trick. Phishing scams involve sending you bogus e-mails that look like they are from a bank or another online business.

The ideal thing the criminal wants you to do is click on an e-mail link that takes you to a web site that looks authentic. Then, the instructions ask you to enter your password and account number. Once you do they get your sensitive personal data and they help themselves to your money.

The new pharming scam is similar to phishing scams but with a bit of a new twist. The pharming scam works by actually redirecting your Internet browser. That just means when you type a legitimate website address into a web address bar you are redirected without your knowledge to a bogus site that looks identical to the genuine site.

Once you log in with your login name and password, the information is immediately captured by the thief. The real danger of the new pharming scam is that you no longer have to click an email link for your personal information to be stolen.

You can obviously see how serious this scam could be. So to avoid becoming a new victim of the pharming scam here is a list of recommendations that may help you.

• Always use a secure website when you submit credit card or other sensitive information via your Web browser. The beginning of the Web address in your browsers address bar should be “https://” rather than just “http://”

• Log into your online accounts on a regular basis. Check your bank, credit and debit card statements to ensure that all transactions are legitimate. If anything looks suspicious, contact your bank and all card issuers immediately.

• Regularly check that your browser is up to date and new security patches are applied. Go to the Microsoft Security home page at http://www.microsoft.com/security/default.mspx The easiest way to stay updated is click on the “Get updates for Windows automatically” link.

• Always report an entire original phishing email with its original header information intact to the Federal Trade Commission at spam@uce.gov. Then, notify the Internet Fraud Complaint Center of the FBI by filing a complaint at https://rn.ftc.gov/pls/dod/wsolcq$.startup?Z_ORG_CODE=PU01.

New security measures must continually be added to the Internet because criminals probe for any weakness they can find. Be aware of the latest online pharming scam so you won’t becoming a victim of this new threat.

About The Author
Gary Gresham

This article is provided by http://www.spyware-information.com where you will find free spyware cleaners, downloads, removal software and valuable tips. For regularly updated articles about adware, spyware and protection from identity theft go to http://spyware-information.com/articles_1.html

The Online Dating Scam – 5 Great Tips to See if Your Partner is Who they Say they Are

Online dating scams are big at the moment. The papers are full of them. So often you hear of men and women being conned by some scammer claiming to be someone they aren’t. Just today I read of a gang of men from Nigeria, using false persona’s conning over $300,000 out of their victims in the space of just a few short months.

Their scam premise was that they pose as US or British businessmen. Once a relationship has been built through an online dating site, they then have to take a business trip to Nigeria, where everything “apparently” goes wrong. This is when they start pleading their online dating partners for money. Trouble is, by then, their partners have already fallen in love with them and so send the cash out willingly, totally unbeknownst to them that these scammers have been in Nigeria all along!

So what can we do to protect ourselves against these online dating scams? Well, here are five quick tips to help ensure you don’t get caught out. Invariably, these scams are mainly men scamming women, but of course, it happens both ways, so this advice is for everyone!

Point 1. Ask for and expect webcam conversations. It’s one thing to upload a photo of an attractive person on the internet, but they aren’t going to be able to pull that off over a webcam. Webcams only cost a few dollars these days, so if you’re getting excuses on why they can’t webcam with you, you should be taking a big step back.

Point 2. If they are claiming to hold certain positions at work or a certain level of education, ask them questions about their profession. They should be able to give you decent discussion and answer basic questions without needing to quote, “get back to you on that”.

Point 3. Keep a lookout for basic grammatical and spelling errors which could indicate that the spammer is not writing in their native language. Again, it can be an indication of their level of education.

Point 4. Take a good look at the emails that you are receiving. Do they appear to be too general in nature, with perhaps only a small personalised introduction and do they have a disjointed feel where they don’t naturally progress from the previous email?

Point 5. There are various resources available on the internet to help you “snoop” into the life of your partner to ensure they are who they say they are. You may feel that this is being too intrusive, but love is the most intrusive tool!

Love is based on trust and honesty, and it is your trustfulness that these online dating scam artists are preying upon. They see your ability to love as your greatest weakness. So, by following the above advice, you can help to protect yourself and ensure that your life and your money are kept safe.
About The Author

Richard Hull is the co-owner of Internet Romance and the following link provides more detailed information and solutions to combat this dating scam. Click here for more information on protecting yourself.

http://www.internetromance.org

BOB HUGHES-HUGHES PROPERTIES, BUSINESS BROKERS OF PALM SPRINGS CA, CONSPIRE WITH LA QUINTA BAKING COMPANY AND ROBERT GARY TO CONVERT A BUSINESS BROKERS FEES

Bob Hughes and Hughes Properties of Palm Springs CA seem to be very greedy and are willing to engage in bullyism in order to aid La Quinta Baking Company and Robert & Mary Gary (collectively LBC), in a “theft of services” for valid fees earned by a Business Broker that LBC & Gary begged for help.

Seems that LBC was unable to renew its Lease and was being put on notice by the Landlord that its defaulted lease for another business in the same complex (a deli), guarantees due were going to result in LBC being shuttered.

LBC recruited a Businessman in or about Aug 2011 to aid in preserving the LBC business and tenancy. After 10 months the LBC operations were preserved, a new lease was made and LBC in concert with Hughes after converting the important services performed, find a buyer for the business that the Business Broker preserved. The sale for LBC is supposed to be $495,000.00 to Garys and 10% to Hughes.

Now Garys, although they agreed to the fees refuse now to pay the NY Broker for his months of services. Gary after the Invoice was tendered asked for more advice and work on the sale of LBC and sought the advice for the opening of a Beverly Hills restaurant. Gary bombarded this NY Business broker with dozens of email demands ano repeated meetings and phone calls. Seem that the Garys change of tune is orchestrated by Hughes and his greed to keep all the LBC business-sale fees for himself and the Garys.

Now Hughes with the aid of a ‘gang-up’ led by Bob Hughes and Lawyer Mary Gilstrap from Roemer & Harnik Esqs are concocting ‘tall-tales’ engaging in slander and trying to allow Hughes to convert the fees earned by others.

Without the guidance of the NY Broker there was nothing for greedy Hughes to sell. Meanwhile the NY broker has filed suit against the Garys and LBC for his fees.

Hughes recruiting Gilstrap and others is engaging in bullyism, intimidation, lies and deception.

Gilstrap has slandered and lied to the NYC Business Broker’s lawyer and lied as to the Hughes Business Broker “SOLE & EXCLUSIVE AUTHORIZATION & RIGHT TO SELL”

Any one knows that as “business brokers” commissions are paid fof advice and efforts that result in the sale of Businesses, just as the Hughes AUTHORIZATION states.

Gillstrap trying to aid Hughes in this “theft of Services” tries desperately to make the work appear to be a real-estate sale.

Hughes seems to be engaged in this form of bullyism as the conduct here is more than suspect.
Recruting Lawyers to cheat and lie in order to rob a validly earned fees is despicable.

Scams Inc is now conductiog a full investigation into the Business conduct, background and activities of Bob Hughes, Hughes properties of Palm Springs, Ca and how they can use lawyers to shake-down legitimate business persons and disenfranchise their fees and convert them for Hughes benefit—-stay tuned

Stranded Parishioner: Church Scam

My pastor was sitting in his office the other day when a call came through to the parish office requesting to speak to him. The call started out friendly, “Hi, my name is Mike Donnelly! My wife, Cathy and I are parishioners. Do you remember us? We come to Mass with our two teenage children.”

Series of Misfortunes

The caller then went on to explain explain that his family had to travel to Chicago as a result of his father-in-law’s sudden illness. “Do you remember me telling you about my wife’s father’s serious illness right before Christmas”, the caller asked. “I have bad news to tell you, my father-in-law just passed away.” After the priest expressed his condolences over the recent death, the caller then went on “Yes, Father, I have even more bad news to tell you.” The caller then went on to explain that his wallet had been stolen by a thief and that now his family was stranded in Chicago without money or a way to get home.

The Scam

The caller then went on to explain that all he needed was for the pastor to go to his house to pick up some cash that he had at home and to wire it to him in Chicago. Feeling uneasy about going to a home that wasn’t his own, the priest asked that the caller phone the police to provide the priest with an escort to the house. “Oh no, Father! I’ve already tried the police and they won’t help me. What about if you “lend” me the money and I will pay you back when I return home?”

Fortunately, the pastor’s common sense prevailed over his strong desire to help the stranded parishioner. The details of the tale of misfortune didn’t make sense: why did the wife have her own wallet to help the family home. A search of the parish rolls revealed that no parishioner by the name of Mike and Cathy Donnelly existed. When the priest informed the caller that he wouldn’t be able to help him without the police being notified, the caller cheerily rang off saying, “That’s okay, father! I’ll see you when I get back”.

The Many Lives of the Scam

My pastor was not alone in receiving such a call. This scam has been perpetuated among many different churches around the United States. The specifics of the tale change but the modus operandi is always the same. The caller first establishes a rapport with the pastor, claming to be a parishioner of the church. He then spins a tale of woe about some event that has gone wrong. A review of the logs of one gay church showed that the caller is always struck with AIDS. Lastly, the caller pleads for the pastor to help him out financially in order to get the stranded parishioner home.

About The Author
Caitlin Dempsey is the editor of http://TheCatholicGuide.com, a resource for finding about Catholicism, the Faith and Catholic Life.

editor@thecatholicguide.com