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Job Interviews In Google Hangouts

[UPDATED with more than 84 Scam Jobs below. Last UPDATE August 21, 2019]
On February 14, 2018 TDS was contacted by a woman from Colorado we’ll call “Wanda.”  Wanda used Indeed.com to post her job resume and was contacted on February 13 by a woman who called herself Mrs. Faith Benjamin, a hiring manager for the company AHRENS GROUP PTY LTD.   Faith had contacted Wanda about a job in data entry.   According to Bloomberg.com, Ahrens Group PTY LTD provides construction, engineering, and mining services in Australia.   Faith invited Wanda into Google Hangouts for an interview and conversation about this job. Over the course of her conversation, Wanda became very suspicious that “Faith” was a scammer and the job wasn’t real.  She contacted us the next day.  We’ll let her tell you her story and then afterwards explain how Wanda and TDS tricked the scammer!  As you read Wanda’s exchange with Faith, how many suspicious “red flags” can you spot? Also, just like a “poker tell” can you spot the “tell” that reveals what part of the world Faith is really from?  At the bottom of this long conversation we’ll reveal the “tell” and all the red flags.

However, one point is critically important for our readers to understand.  Other victims targeted by advance-check scams disguised as job offers have also reported having interviews via Google Hangouts.  LEGITIMATE BUSINESSES WILL NOT USE GOOGLE HANGOUTS (or “IM” – Instant Messaging) AS ITS TOOL TO INTERVIEW A JOB CANDIDATE!  It is a guarantee of a scam if the “hiring manager” tells you to use Google Hangouts!  If you doubt us, insist to your “hiring manager” that you want to use Skype or Facetime (or even a phone call!) and you’ll be given an excuse why it isn’t possible, or be told that you are not the right person for the job! That’s a job you don’t want!

IMPORTANT SCAM VARIATION REPORTED July 18, 2019:
A woman targeted by this scam informed us that in addition to all the details similar to what is described below, the scammer (pretending to be Mrs. Donna Watkins and claiming to represent Capgemini in this case using email “hrdesk.donnarecruiter46 “@” gmail.com”) also asked for access to the victim’s Smartphone account.  Mrs. Watkins claimed that the Company would pay the victim $100 to $150 for the company to use her phone and pay for the Verizon phone bills as part of the woman’s “employment” with Capgemini. Mrs. Watkins said “Your information is secured and will not be shared with any third party. I need you to provide me with your phone carrier login to enable the vendor issue out the phone to you. Do not worry about payment as the company accountant will be making the payment for all phones sent out.”  And so Mrs. Watkins asked the victim for her login credentials, including her security question and answer!  DO NOT EVER PROVIDE YOUR LOGIN INFORMATION TO THESE SCAMMERS!

NOTE 1: At the bottom of this article you will find a list of names, emails, phone numbers and companies being reported by victims to The Daily Scam in the course of this scam.  Also, legitimate hiring managers will NOT use Gmail addresses or email addresses from “@consultant.com” or “@usa.com.”

NOTE 2: In the Spring of 2018 the scammers running this scam are changing their tactics!  Some are purchasing domain names that are SIMILAR TO the real businesses they claim to represent to make it appear that they are legitimate when they contact victims.  DO YOUR HOMEWORK!  Look up the domain names you find in the email addresses after the “@” symbol using a WHOIS tool!  It is was recently registered, it’s a fake!

NOTE 3: In July, 2018 we heard from a victim who told us that her interview was first through SKYPE!  It is no surprise though when the victim told us “It was just chatting because she said she was busy with others as well.”  Legitimate hiring managers will NOT conduct an interview using only text chat in Skype!  The interview would be a video chat!  Following the SKYPE interview, the victim was offered the job and asked to speak with the “Orientation Officer” via Google Hangouts.  The Orientation Officer (Bruce Brian Johnson) asked the victim to send him the victim’s bank account information so he could “pay her” for the orientation.  The bank form she was asked to fill out asked for her Online account password, her security question and answer to that question!  That’s when the victim knew it was a scam

NOTE 4:  In Summer 2018, victims have begun to tell us that after being hired, the scammers try to email a check to them immediately and ask them to deposit it.  Here’s what a woman named Nicole told us on July 18: “They sent me a check by email but could not deposit it through my mobile banking because the back part of the check was pixelated and could not be processed. So they opted to send me an actual check through Fedex but it also didn’t push through since they said that there was a problem which they couldn’t figure out. They sent me another check through email for an amount of $900.20 which was meant to buy the necessary office equipment, same as your post. So when the check was processed and funds were already available after i deposited it through mobile banking, the next step was for me to buy Amazon cards worth $900 and had me send the codes back to him. From there on, i thought it was already a red flag since i asked him why I had to buy those just to pay the said vendor for the equipment or why cant they just pay the vendor directly. His answer was that they had issues with other applicants that they sent money but applicants didn’t buy the necessary materials, used their own equipment and kept the money, in short, the reason was trust issues with applicants so they had to do this to prove they could trust the applicants. After seeing your post, I immediately called my bank to return the money that i deposited just to not link me with any fraudulent checks that were under my name.”

NOTE 5: In many of these interviews, victims inform us that the person interviewing them will start out the interview by giving a short bio of his or her background and credentials as a way to try to make this sound “official.”

NOTE 6: In January, 2019 a victim of this scam confronted the scammer and sending him a link to this very article showing the business name and the scammer’s fake name (William White).  The scammer told the victim that it was just a competitor trying to discredit him!  See job scam #35 below for Wanda Group!

NOTE 7: On May 22, 2019 a man contacted us to say that he received SEVEN texts in one day from scam job interviews.  All found his information on Zip Recruiter.  Below are the texts he shared with us, along with the companies, phone numbers and names they claimed to represent.  You can see in the first 2 texts that the candidate was asked to interview in Google Hangouts by “Scott Letier.”  That’s when the candidate said “no thank you” and sent the scammer a link to this article!  Scammers pretended to be:

Scott Letier from Conduent, Inc. 830-216-6826
Terri Arnold from Goldman Sachs Group, INC. 740-235-0710
Camille with Recruiter.com 713-804-4668
Hazel A. Hurley from Westell Technologies, Inc. 410-609-6330
Mary from Long & Foster Real Estate 860-406-3906

Are you looking for a good deal on a new or used laptop? Don’t buy from these online stores!

Have you ever lost money to online scams? Don’t ask “Global Elite Recovery Group” for help!

 

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Wanda’s Story:
I’m sad to report that I just fell victim to this scam today. Fortunately, I only provided my name and address – no bank account information and no social security information. But, I want to send this because it is SO VERY SIMILAR to one I just read on your site. Here’s the body of the entire conversation but I am redacting my information for security. Me, I’ll call myself “Wanda” The “Hiring Manager” is calling herself Faith Benjamin, email: agpdf.msbenjaminfaith “@” gmail.com.

Wanda: Hello. I received an email message to contact you for the position of Data Entry.

Faith: Good Afternoon, You are welcome to AHRENS GROUP PTY LTD. I believe you are fully prepared and available for the job briefing/interview?

Wanda: Yes

Faith: Before we proceed with the job briefing and interview, I would like to apologize for our unseemly approach if this interview conducting method is unprofessional to you or if you are new to all this. I believe the world constantly changes, and you know it is important to stay on the top of any advancement that we come across. That’s why the board decided to use this method of conducting interviews. I believe you clearly understand why we used this method of conducting interviews. Are we good to go?

Wanda: Yes, good to go.

Faith: I’m Mrs. Faith Benjamin, one of the Hiring Managers of AHRENS GROUP PTY LTD. I will be the one to brief you on the positions and the company. Kindly Indicate your full names and location (City, State)

Faith: About Us: 
AHRENS GROUP PTY LTD is a full-service construction, engineering and mining services company, delivering a complete range of project services and cost-effective solutions. We achieve this through our complete range of in-house capabilities, our numerous strategic locations and our collaborative, personable approach to business.

Our broad capabilities and experience mean we are a one-stop shop that can deliver your complete project – from design, steel fabrication and procurement through to construction and project delivery – or any individual element you required. We work with all our clients to deliver customized value-for-money solutions to their specific project needs.

We recognize the need for effective workplace policies and procedures that comply with best practice principles and all relevant legislation, codes of conduct and other regulations. Our commitment to these helps us deliver high-quality results in all areas of our business.

[NOTE: Wanda informed us that this description of Ahrens Group was copied directly from the AHRENS GROUP website “About Us” page.

Faith: This is strictly an online job and from home, which means you will be working from home. Hours are flexible and you can also choose to work from anywhere of your choice, the pay is $27.00 per hour during full working hours and the training is $22.00 per hour and will be getting your payment weekly via check or direct deposit, if you are employed you are going to be working full time or part-time. Benefits: Health, Dental, Life and AD&D Insurance, Employee Wellness and 401k plans. Paid Time Off and Holidays with Generous Company Discounts. Understood

Wanda: Yes. I have a question.

Faith: Go ahead…?

Wanda: The pay I would receive during training is $22/hr?

Faith: Affirmative.

Wanda: How long is training, typically?

Faith: If hired, 3 days…

Wanda: Got it

Faith: Our Corporate Head-Office is located Wilhelm Road, Kingsford SA 5118 PO Box 2, Sheaoak Log SA 5371. We are currently working in some locations (OFFICE SETTING) in Colorado Springs CO, Houston TX, Atlanta GA. That’s why you are been employed online. Once the office is up and running on the 5th of March, you will start by working from home till the branch is available or setup, immediately the branch is opened you will be assigned to work over there that’s if hired. Understood

Wanda: Yes

Faith: The idea of online work from home was initiated due to this reason so we can reach all our customers all over the world, the company made this job available based on the fact that we are currently re-strategizing and upgrading our database and are presently developing locations in the United States. The location in your area is currently still under construction and undisclosed for security reasons, you will be surely be notified of the location once its ready to be opened Okay?

Wanda: Yes.

Faith: Position Hiring: Data Entry
RESPONSIBILITIES/DUTIES: Updating client information in computer system Running and processing multiple documents utilizing Microsoft Word, Excel, and Access Inputting purchase orders Other various administrative tasks, Inputs information from a variety of sources into a computer database. May take customer orders and enter them into a pre-established tracking system Assignments will be sent to you via e-mail or IM and you will report directly to your immediate supervisor

KEY REQUIREMENT: Applicants for this role will need to be familiar with relevant software packages and have a good typing speed. They will need to have strong analytical skills and excellent organizational skills. They will also need to be able to operate other forms of equipment such as printers and a tape machine. They should also to be able to work to deadlines and use their own initiative

I assume you can handle all of these duties effectively if you get hired?

Wanda: No problem.
[NOTE: Wanda began to feel suspicious about this job, especially after hearing that she would have to be able to operate a “tape machine.”  She’s a smart woman with good search skills.  She copied some phrases from this job description and searched for them in Google.  It didn’t take her long to discover this exact job description posted word-for-word on Internships.com:

Faith: This section of the interview is called question and answer section. I would be asking you some question’s concerning your background and qualification and you are required to use your own words structure in answering all questions, also you’re to end every answer with (DONE) Letting me know I can proceed with my next question. Understood?

Wanda: Yes

Faith: 
(FIRST SECTION)
(1) What type of jobs have you had?
(2) How did you get your previous jobs?
(3) What were your main responsibilities? Achievements?
(4) Why did you leave your last job? Are you currently employed?
(5) How would you rate your typing speed? Are you a team player?
(6) Tell us three of your major attributes;
(7) Are you willing to work flexible or long hours?
(8) Do you have a laser jet printer, copier, and scanner?
(9) How would you be an asset to our organization?
(10)Tell Us why you feel you are the right person for this Job?

Wanda: [RESPONSES REDACTED FOR PRIVACY]
(DONE)

Faith: (SECOND SECTION)
PAYROLL & WORKING SCHEDULE:
1. How many hours are you willing to Work per day? (4hr Minimum per day or 40hrs Maximum per week) What time range?
2. When would you be available to start if HIRED?
3. Payroll Interval (Weekly or Bi-weekly)
4. Payroll Method (Direct deposit/Check)
5. What is the name of the Bank which you currently operate with so as to see if it tallies financially with the company’s official salary payment account?

Wanda: 1. I am in the [REDACTED] so my working/waking hours would be between 6am and 10pm. I am willing to work full time – 40 hours.
2. I am available immediately.
3. Bi-weekly.
4. Direct deposit.
5. [REDACTED FOR PRIVACY]
(DONE)

Faith: No. 5 question was asked because I wanted to know if you have a checking account because to receive future payments from the company an employee needs to have a checking account. Do you have a checking account at the moment?

Wanda: Yes

Faith: You’ve been impressive so far. For me, you’ll be a perfect fit I just hope the company gives you a chance to show what you are made of.

Wanda: Thank you.

Faith: I need you to hold on online because I need to forward our conversation to the Head Dept to enable them take decision on your performance. I need you to hold back online for 20-45mins.

Wanda: That’s not a problem.

Faith: I’m back now, the result for the interview just conducted is on my screen. Are you ready to know your stand?

Wanda: Of course!

Faith: After careful consideration, I have good news for you. The good news is you’ve just been confirmed qualified for the position of a CALL CENTER REPRESENTATIVE. You are welcome to AHRENS GROUP PTY LTD. You are now given a chance to show your commitment, assertiveness, and diligence and be a productive employee. Welcome to the online team

[NOTE: Wanda informed us that this essentially confirmed for her that it was a scam.  Can you see why?  She was interviewing for a job in Data Entry!]

Wanda: I’m hired?!

Faith: Correct. The hard-copy of employee manual guide and W4 will be sent to your email and you will be required to sign and fill-out required data then email back to us for documentation OK?

Wanda: Yes.

Faith: We encourage the development of knowledge, interpersonal skills, and business competencies. Your salary will be $27.00/Hr. How would you like to be Paid? Weekly Or Bi-Weekly?

Wanda: Bi-Weekly

Faith: Our employee training programs provide in-house/external instructor-led and online training opportunities. During your training and orientation, one of the organization’s supervisors will reach you via e-mail or phone. Also, they will put you through our company’s guidelines under US Human Resources Laws and Regulations OK

Wanda: Ok

Faith: You will be receiving your duties online every day and I will always be online to assist you with any difficulties. Your Primary duties include: Preparation of Balance sheets (Mini), account balancing, invoicing recording, proper data analysis of sales records and recording pay slips into accounting database

Secondary duties: Now, your secondary daily duties would be to report to your Supervisor, who would be attached to you online, He/She would assign logs of duty daily and you would be required to work according to instructions, using the Microsoft Office tools and the Accounting software. Now the function of the Accounting software is to arrange, formalize and manage the data you have processed, sent to your supervisor via E-mail

I believe you would be able to handle job duties effectively if you are being trained towards it?

Wanda: Absolutely.

Faith: Our benefit programs are designed for the unique needs of each employee. You would be eligible for Benefits after 2 months of working with the company. Benefits offered are Health, Dental and Vision Plans, Short- and Long-Term Disability, Life Insurance, Critical Illness and Accident Policies, 401k Retirement Plan (with Employer Contributions), Health Club Membership (up to $50 per Month), Tuition Assistance (for employees still in college), Employee Assistance, Program Personal and Vacation Time Holiday Pay.

Wanda: That’s amazing.

Wanda: Does the company have a website? Is it http://www.ahrens.com.au?
**Faith never answered my question about the website.**
[TDS NOTE: Many other people who report job scams to us have reported that the person they communicate with will simply ignore questions that might compromise the scam.]

Faith: NOTE: You will need some Accounting software and a Time Tracker to commence your training and orientation and most importantly, you need the software to get started with work as soon as possible.

The work of the time tracker is to evaluate your working hours from the company’s server for your payment purpose since this will be online and work from home job until the branch is commissioned okay?

Wanda: Is the software provided?

Faith: Yes

Faith: You will be undergoing a 3-day(s) of training and orientation which will commence as soon as you have all the working materials and you rest assured that you will be paid for it. Okay?

Wanda: Yes

Faith: Here are the names of the software programs you will need to start working with: Peachtree Complete Accounting Software, CYMA IV for Windows Accounting Software, MYOB Business Essentials Accounting Software, QuickBooks Pro Accounting Software and a Time Tracker.

Faith: Are you familiar with the above software programs?

Wanda: No but software is second nature to me. It’s not a problem.

Faith: The funds for the software will be provided for you by the company via CHECK, make sure you use the funds as instructed for the software/working equipment, Understood?

Wanda: Yes

Faith: The check will be mailed and delivered to your home via FedEx or USPS courier service and once you receive the check you are needed to have it deposited to your bank account via the ATM or Bank Teller for immediate clearance. The funds will be credited and available in your account for cash out within 24 hours or less. You are to deduct the $150.00 as your sign on bonus and the rest of the funds in your account will be for the purchase of your working software.
[Wanda notes:*****BIG RED FLAG****]

Once funds are available for use, I will refer you to one of the company’s certified vendors you are to purchase them from at a discount rate due to the company’s long-lasting relationship and agreement with them.  The vendor’s responsibility would be the installations of the software into a (Brand new 15-inch Apple MacBook Pro 2016 with Touch Bar and Touch ID) with the required updates and patches before shipping them to you okay?

Faith: I believe that with the expertise of the company’s supervisors, your training and orientation will go on smoothly without any issues or hindrances if you are willing to learn.

Wanda: I am!

Faith: In the meantime, I need you to provide me with the following requested info for verification purpose
Name:
Address:
Apt#:
City:
State:
Zip code:
Cell:
email address:

[PERSONAL INFORMATION REDACTED]

Faith: All we inquire from you is good work and trust, you will enjoy every moment working with the company, I have been working for the company for years now and it has been a great opportunity for me and my family.

Wanda: I will do my best.

Faith: This job offers flexible hours but you are to report online by 9: AM daily for duties, task, and assignment but you can as well work 30-40 hours weekly you can also work 6 hours per day understood?

Wanda: Yes

Faith: Alright, that will be all for now, you are to report to me tomorrow morning by 9:am your time for update on the check and how to get started with work, you are to report to me via Google Hangouts, that is you are to log on to your Google Hangouts and message me for update on how to get started. Understood?

Wanda: Yes ma’am!

Wanda: Umm, 9 am my time, correct?

Faith: Make sure you are here tomorrow morning 9:am for Check Update. Enjoy the rest of your day and stay blessed!

Wanda: 9am for my time zone, correct?

Faith: Yes

Wanda: I will see you here tomorrow morning.
[At this point, Wanda is so suspicious, she Googles employment scams, finds our website, and contacts The Daily Scam.]

 

February 14, 2018: 

Faith: Good morning

Wanda: Good morning You were early!

Faith: Yes, sorry about that. How are you doing today? Happy Val!

Wanda: I’m doing well. I forgot it was Valentine’s day.

Faith: Oh, okay How was your evening?

Wanda: It was good. I was looking for the packet from HR and I didn’t get it. And, do you send official offer letters?

Faith: Yes, you will get that before the end of today as yesterday was a busy day for us. Ready for today’s update?

Wanda: Yes

Faith: I would like you to verify the details you provided me the last time, the check will be issued to the details we have in Our database, so i want you to tell me if it correct.
[DETAILS REDACTED]  Correct?

Wanda: Correct

Faith: The check to use in purchasing your working materials would be mailed out to you today and i believe you will receive it by tomorrow morning Via FedEx or USPS and I will be here to provide you with the tracking number so you can keep track and know when it will get to you. Understood?

Wanda: Yes.

Faith: You are to deposit the check in your bank account when you receive it, Once deposited, funds would be made available for withdrawal The next day (within 24 hours or less)

Wanda: That’s really fast for my bank.

Faith: When funds are made available, you will be entitled to an upfront payment of $150 (Signupbonus), you are to withdrawal the rest of the funds and send to the vendor that you are to purchase the materials from, and working materials will be sent to you the next morning Via FedEx or USPS okay.

Faith: Yes, Credit union has 2 days policies. I understand that.

Wanda: Okay, just wanted you to know.

Faith: I understand that fact.

Wanda: Do you have a mailing address for Ahrens?

Faith: I believe you understood all I have stated today?

Wanda: I’m sure since I’m officially an employee, you can tell me what part of town the office is being built in. I need to plan for the commute.

Wanda: Oh, for sure.

Faith: Yes, I perfectly understand where you’re driving at. As soon as you have your working materials in your possession you will be given access into the company’s employee online database to enable you commence training with. Also, your online immediate supervisor will keep you posted upon completion of the office location.

Wanda: No not, not training. I need to make arrangements for a car so I can get to work after the office opens. I was thinking about that last night and since I don’t own a car, I’ll need to make arrangements.

Wanda: I thought you said you were my supervisor and I was to report to you? I’m confused.

Faith: Yes, all should be after the purchasing of your working materials which should be by this week.

Wanda: Just curious: why doesn’t Ahrens populate the laptop and then send that to me? It’s really hard for me to get around town without a car.

Faith: No, I am hiring Manager, your only to report to me until you have your working materials purchased…… from there you will be contacted by your immediate supervisor via phone or email. He/she will guide you through your training and orientation programme.

Wanda: Oh, ok. So now I just wait for my check? And then get the software and after that training will start?

Wanda: I like this Hangouts. I never used it before yesterday. Pretty cool environment for connecting, learning. Is this where training will be conducted?

Wanda: Did we get disconnected? Hello?

Wanda: Ms. Faith?

Faith: Sorry..  I’m experiencing a bit of slow network. Yes, you wait for the check and purchase your working materials.

Wanda: Oh, you are still there!

Wanda: So, there’s no training here today?

Faith: Not today, training won’t hold until you have your working materials in your possession.

Wanda: Alrighty then! I have to catch a cab to the store. I’ll look for my check and come back here when it gets here. Once again, thank you for your time. Bye for now!

Faith: It won’t get to you until tomorrow. Your welcome.

Faith: That’s all for today, get back to me Tomorrow morning 8:am for the tracking # to your package. Enjoy your day ahead of you and stay blessed!

Wanda: I sure will. Have a good afternoon!

Faith: Thank you.

Later that morning…

Wanda: Ms. Faith? I’m going to need an official offer letter, as is customary, before I can move forward. Please provide as soon as possible. Thank you.

Faith: Sure, you don’t have to worry about. You will get the offer letter in your email today.

Wanda: It needs to be on official company letterhead so I can cancel my unemployment.

Faith: You’ll get the offer letter in your email.

Wanda: Perfect! Thank you!

Faith: Your welcome.

February 15, 2018:

Faith: Good morning.

Wanda: Good morning

Faith: How are you doing today?

Wanda: I’m doing well. I received my offer letter and forwarded it to my unemployment contact for review.

Faith: Oh okay, Ready for today’s update?

Wanda: Sure!

Faith: This is the tracking number to your package:  771482143112   you are required to track it on  www.FedEx.com to know the delivery status. Once that has been done, get back to me.

NOTE: The FedEx was sent from Chicago, IL but you’ll see that the envelope lists the sender’s address in California.

Wanda: That’s it?

Faith: Please track package and let me know the status of the package OK.

Wanda: Says it was delivered but I haven’t received anything.

Faith: Check your front door!

Wanda: They didn’t even ring the doorbell!

Faith: Other employees did received theirs, Kindly check your front door to confirm the delivery from FedEx… They don’t have to ring the door bell.
[TDS NOTE: We believe “Faith” is actually revealing that a similar fake check has also been sent to other potential victims at the same time.  See red flag #8 below.]

Wanda: It’s here

Faith: I need you to open your package now and verify the amount on the check now and let me know the actual amount sent to you now.

Wanda: It’s for $4,890.00.  That’s expensive software.

Faith: Amount is Correct…The software are very expensive which is why we decided to send you a check to cover all the cost of your working equipment. Understood?

Wanda: No

Faith: What do you mean No!?

Wanda: I mean, I don’t have anywhere near that kind of money in my account. I’m going to call my bank real quick.

Faith: Are you purchasing with your own Money?

Wanda: No but I can’t cover that amount with the balance in my account My bank policy is such that if I don’t have the balance, they will hold the check for a period of 7 working days for it to clear.

Faith: Okay, It seems your not really interested in this Job, I’ll reach out to accounting dept and cancel the check.  Do have a great and don’t bother signing the offer letter.

Wanda: What? It’s not my policy

Wanda: Hello? Are you serious?

Faith: Yes, I am. You seem not to be serious about this.

Wanda: I am interested!

Faith: You think this is some Joke Ma’m?

Wanda: No, I don’t. I am only citing my bank policy. I have no way to change how they do business.  If I knew it was so large, I could have told you that yesterday. Maybe it could be divided in smaller pieces so my bank won’t put a hold on it.

Wanda: How about we do a voice call? I can call you at the number on the website. Ms. Faith Benjamin, correct? I should be able to get through, I think. Not sure I can place an international call on my phone. What time is it in your location?

Faith: My location is New York, NY.

Wanda: New York?

Faith: Yes.

Wanda: Ok, even better, then. Let’s chat voice. What’s your number?

Faith: I don’t use my phone during working hours, sorry.

Wanda: You don’t have a corporate phone? Office phone? VOIP?

Faith: We do, only for work use.

Wanda: This is work-related, no?

Faith: I am already talking to you here right?

Wanda: Yes, but I have questions and it’s too much to type…

Wanda: I’ll hail a cab and head over to the bank. I’ll let you know when I get back. Maybe we can talk about the offer letter then?

Faith: What about it?

Wanda: Oh, you said not to bother signing it. I thought if I went to the bank and got back to you, we could talk about that.

Wanda: Hello?

Faith: Noted.

Wanda: Noted? Okay, I’ll be back in about 45 minutes.

Faith: Okay.

Wanda says: So… 45 minutes goes by as I sit at my computer doing research around the web, watching a program on Investigation Discovery, and doing laundry.

 

Wanda: Whew! I made it. Sorry for delay, my Uber driver was late getting here.

Faith: Oh, okay

Wanda: Good news! I had to do some pleading but the bank said they can release the funds on Tuesday.

Faith: That’s a 2 days hold.

Wanda: The 20th.  It’s a five day hold. Versus the 7 day they would normally do. Good, right?

Wanda: A little delay but I can order the software as soon as Tuesday morning and then maybe get started shortly after that? How long does it take for them to ship the MacBook?

Faith: 24hours.

Wanda: Oh, that’s fast. Cool.

Faith: Normally for Credit unions, Funds are either suppose to be available within a 24hours period or 48hours. I am only trying to make sure you are on same track alongside other employees.

Wanda: Because it’s issued from out of state and such a large amount, they normally hold for 7 days. I got that bumped up to just 5 days because I’ve been there so many years.

Faith: Okay and again, my reason for being concerned is this I am only trying to make sure you are on same track alongside other employees.

Wanda: I don’t know what to say…

Faith: Okay.

Wanda: What happens now?

Wanda: Faith? What happens now?

Wanda: Hello? Are you still there? Network problems?

Faith: I guess we have no choice order than to do it your Bank’s way….

Faith: Ok. Then should I meet back up with you?

Wanda: Yes. That has my information on it so I won’t be submitting that over the web. Do you have a mailing address? I can send FedEx.

Faith: Like I stated earlier, Note for personal security purpose, you can erase your account information if there are any written on the receipt okay

Wanda: Okay. I will do that. Where should I send it?

Wanda: Are you okay? I mean, your network status? Seems real slow.

Faith: Yes, I am okay. I’m very busy that’s why.

Wanda: Should I meet back up with you when the funds clear? I need to know who to contact to purchase software. I want to get started as soon as possible.

Faith: Of course. I’ll be providing you with that information once it’s time.

Faith: Also, You should send updates to the email received on the letter alongside the check.

Wanda: What letter?

Faith: Didn’t you receive a letter along with the check?

Wanda: There was one sheet of paper, the check at the top with blank underneath. I removed the check and took that to the bank. Was there supposed to be something on the blank area?

Faith: Oh okay. There was an instruction that came alongside the check. Notify me once the deposit has been completed.

HERE ARE THE INSTRUCTIONS SENT INSIDE THE ENVELOPE AND ENVELOPE:

Wanda: Well, since you’re in the U.S., Happy President’s Day Weekend! See you Tuesday! Bye for now!

Faith: The receipt? It’s required for record purpose.

Wanda: Oh, I’ll send that Fedex if you give me an address.

Faith: I don’t understand? You can’t have it sent via email?

Wanda: I’m not putting my information on the web. Too many boogers on the web. You know? You can’t be safe enough. Since I deposited the check, I’ll sign the offer letter and send that back to Ahrens Group.

Faith: The receipt or the offer letter?

Wanda: I can’t thank you enough! Well, I’ll send you the receipt. Address? I can have it there tomorrow morning, via Fedex.

Faith: It seems your not understanding me….. If you have the receipt sent to my email address, It will be recorded ASAP. If not, fair enough.

Wanda: No, I understand and I’m not willing to send that kind of information over the web. I’ve been in this business too long to compromise that information.

Faith: Have a great day ahead of you.

Wanda: See you Tuesday!

Wanda: So you don’t want me to send it fedex?

Faith: If you feel you don’t trust me, I understand. Tuesday!

Wanda: Alright then!

ADDENDUM:

The Daily Scam provided Wanda with a special link to send to Faith to show her that Wanda had deposited the check.  But Wanda hadn’t deposited the check! She knew this was a scam and had already contacted the bank whose name was on the check she had received.  The bank informed Wanda that other fraudulent checks had been submitted against this account just recently and they were aware of the problem!  TDS has previously learned that scammers will typically run a batch of scams at the same time using nearly identical fraudulent checks against the same account all at once.  Typically, six to fifteen.  That means six to fifteen people being victimized, in addition to the business whose name appears on the check.

Wanda sent her special link to Faith, saying it was proof that she had deposited the check.  When “Faith” clicked it, TDS was informed exactly where in the world “Faith” was located.  It was Lagos, Nigeria!  “Faith” was very likely a professional 419-scammer!  We have since tricked other “Google Hangout” interviewers to click a link and confirm that they are also located in Lagos, Nigeria.   Additional confirmation of this comes from a man named Cody on July 21, 2018.  Cody didn’t fall for this job interview scam and engaged in an honest conversation with the scammer.  In their “bro” moment (all captured on screenshot), Cody got the scammer (using the name “Josh White”) to admit he was trying to trick him into sending money to him in Nigeria!  “Josh” said to Cody “the reason we do this in Nigeria is to survive. [The] government is not helping at all. My mother has been sick. Buying drugs have been a problem [for my mother]. No disability money, no benefits from the government. I just need little cash to make sure my mom survives.”  And then tells Cody that his real name is Paul.  We don’t know if his MOM-story is total bull or not, but we now have confirmation from several sources that these scams are perpetrated out of Nigeria!

RED FLAGS:

  1. Hiring manager asks to interview the candidate through Google Hangouts (or “IM” – Instant Messaging)
  2. Candidate is hired without a face-to-face, video chat or even a phone call and in just a matter of hours.
  3. Faith informs Wanda that Ahrens Group is opening a new office in her area on March 5 but says “The location in your area is currently still under construction and undisclosed for security reasons.” That’s total BS.
  4. A “Key Requirement” for the job is to “be able to operate other forms of equipment such as printers and a tape machine.” Seriously??
  5. It is extremely unusual and highly suspicious that an employer would ask an employee to use their personal checking account for business transactions.
  6. Wanda is hired after only answering a bunch of questions on Google Hangouts. And hired for CALL CENTER REPRESENTATIVE, not data entry as she was first informed.
  7. Faith ignores some of Wanda’s questions.
  8. Faith tells Wanda a check will be mailed to her to deposit and the funds will be available within 24 hours or less. TDS has spoken to banks about this.  They tell us that some fraudulent checks are so well crafted that the bank doesn’t discover the fraud for 7 business days.  This is because criminals are sometimes able to create a fake check using a real business bank account holder, with a real routing and account number.  It is therefore the business that sometimes calls the bank to say they never issued the check.  Guess who is responsible for the lost funds?  The victim!
  9. When Wanda and Faith say goodbye to each other, Faith says “Stay blessed!” This is Faith’s “poker tell” revealing her background.  Though we generalize, Africans frequently say things like “Dearest One,” “Remain Blessed” and “Stay Blessed.”  These expressions are part of their religious colloquialisms.  We wrote about this “tell” in our August 16, 2017 newsletter.
  10. Look how quickly Faith says she will cancel the check for nearly $5000 and informs Wanda “don’t bother signing the offer letter” when Wanda pushes back against depositing such a large check!
  11. Faith pushes back when Wanda insists on calling her to chat over the phone. The exchange is ridiculous as Faith says “I don’t use my phone during working hours, sorry” as she refers to her work phone!
  12. Ahrens Group is in Australia, yet the check came from a Georgia Bank with RE: Barbara Peavy from a California address, a letter was enclosed with the check from Mr. Michael Lee with an email address of Michael.Lee “@” accountant.com or creditmanager “@” usa.com and also the offer letter.  No physical or email address pointed back to Ahrens Group.
  13. Besides Wanda, several people have contacted us about these scams.  All received an “employment agreement” letter or contract as a simple Word document.  A real business contract would not be presented as a Word document.  These documents contained grammatical errors as well.
    ==================================================================

UPDATE February 22, 2018:
On Feb. 21st we heard from a woman who was also contacted about a job interview in Google Hangouts for a job at AHRENS Group.  The person contacting her was “Allen Jones” who found this woman’s contact information on MySmartRecruiter.com. She was asked to visit Google Hangouts for an interview with a woman named Mrs. Vivian Butland. She tells us that she was quickly and easily hired, then immediately sent a check with the bank name Max Credit Union.  Now, she says, she’s being pressured to deposit the check and use it to pay for something for the “company.”  Here are her contact emails:

The very next day, February 22, we heard from another woman about this same job application!  She was contacted through Freelancer.com  and asked to go into “Google Hangout” to do an interview with the head hiring manager at Ahrens group, a Mr. Jefferey Wilson.  It didn’t take long before she was told that she got the job and that she would receive a check from them for “equipment fees.”  Here is a sample Ahrens-group-employment-contract” sent by a scammer from “Ahrens Group” and another one used for Teva Pharmaceuticals: TEVA-Pharm-Employment-Agreement

UPDATE February 25, 2018:  This scam is clearly very active!  Since posting this article 2 weeks ago, we’ve heard from 8 people about this scam.  Several of them have been interviewed for a job at Ahrens Group but others, as you’ll see here, are interviewed for other jobs.  This particular interview on Google Hangouts was for a job at Teva Pharmaceuticals.  A woman, we’ll call Maggie, was contacted via her account on Fiverr.com by someone identified as Russell129:

Maggie was asked to contact Mrs. Ellen Smith, HR officer for Teva Pharmaceuticals.  But “Ellen Smith” was using a Gmail address!  That is a dead giveaway that this is a scam!  If you want to follow the conversation between Maggie and 3 “employees of Teva Pharmaceutical” open these screenshots.  As you can guess, it didn’t take long before Maggie was offered the position of “Virtual Administrative Assistant” by a “Donald James.”  Maggie ends up putting Mr. Donald James in his place at the very end and we applaud her voice and strength to do so!

Finally, a user of Peopleperhour.com posted this scam interview that she had on Google Hangouts.  It’s just like all the others, just different names and names of companies.

We will continue to add names, contact information and companies represented to this list as we hear from victims about this scam:

      1. Job interview with A.I.G. Group (First identified to TDS on 11/16/17)
        • Ronald A. Rittenmeyer; 973-910-8376
        • Ford Woods (Fordwoods32 “@” gmail.com)
      2. Job interviews with Ahrens Group PTY Ltd:
        • Faith Benjamin, Hiring Manager (agpdf.msbenjaminfaith “@” gmail.com)
        • Michael Lee (Michael.lee “@” accountant.com / creditmanager “@” usa.com)
        • Allen Jones
        • Vivian Butland (mrsvivianbutland “@” gmail.com)
        • Jeffrey Wilson, Hiring Manager
          –one reader sent us a link to “Mr. Jeffrey Wilson’s” Google+ page.  Notice how LITTLE content is there and he has no connections to anyone.  The photo is probably stolen and the textbook he posted was not written or published by him “Jeffrey Wilson” and has nothing to do with Ahrens Group:
        • Abbie Mills (415-691-7146)
        • Ruth White (Her account in Freelancer.com was mstwhite7; Email: mstwhite7 “@” gmail.com; phone: 669-237-2914)
        • Mrs.Evelyn D. Young; 650-517-3203
        • Andy Wallace, Hiring Manager from Ahrens group; mangerwallace “@” yahoo.com (Notice that he misspelled “manager” in his email address!); used Yahoo Messenger to contact person
      3. Job interview with Teva Pharmaceuticals Products Ltd.
        • Russell129 on fiverr.com
        • Ellen Smith (rec.express “@” consultant.com)
        • Donald James (650-487-1437, donaldjames014711 “@” gmail.com)
      4. Job interviews to work with an art gallery selling art work from California:
        • David Wilk (goldenartworkshome “@” gmail.com)
        • Unidentified person using email uniqueartplaza “@” gmail.com
      5. Job interview to work at Marvel Animation, Inc as an animator
        • Jake Layfield (marvelanimationjobz2018 “@” gmail.com) –used Indeed.com
        • Marta Downs (marvelworkstudio2018 “@” gmail. com)
        • Jake Layfield, HR Personnel (marvelanimationjobz2018 “@” gmail .com)
      6. Job interview to work for PA Consulting Group, “a global management consulting company offering services to the Healthcare, Higher Education, Life Sciences, and Commercial industries”
        • Mr Austin Su via text message from phone number 415-506-8793
        • Mrs Colleen Bosworth, Personnel Manager (info.pa “@” consultant.com)
      7. Job interview with Align Technology in California
        • Justin Singh, Senior Talent Acquisition Specialist (justin “@” aligntechcareers.com),  NOTE: Justin’s email came from the domain aligntechcareers.com.  This domain was created 8 days ago on February 23, 2018.  It has no association with the real business, Align Technology, he claims to represent.
      8. Job interview as a “Order Entry Rep.” The Positions Available are: “Data Entry , Accounting Clerk ,Office Assist, Registration Rep Candidate, Secretaria , Manager , Front , Supervisor , Desk,Customer Service , Administrative Assist , Bell Person, File Clerk, Security ,Payroll Clerk , Typist Clerk and IT jobs.” (The company was not listed.)
        • Mr Daniel Lucas, Personnel hiring manager (daniellucas100001 “@” gmail.com)
        • Mr Anthony Lucas (anthonylucas1009 “@” gmail.com)
      9. Job interview as a “Virtual Administrative Assistant” for Recruit Express.  On October 10, a victim informed us that he interviewed for the position of “Remote Virtual Assistant” and “Data Entry Clerk.”  He says… “For payment, they requested I put a balance on my card via cash and they requested that I purchase gift cards with the cash I withdrew. I’d be able to keep the difference between the cash withdrawn and the requested gift card amounts sent back via pictures of the gift card codes.”  (Active again in October, 2018)
        • Anderson Jack, Orientation Officer (865-500-4728; rec.express.anderson “@” gmail.com )
        • Dawson Lame
        • Audrey Smith (Jaud_rey is Skype Username)
        • Andrew Love ( andrewlove212 “@” gmail.com )
        • rec_expressacctdept “@” accountant.com
      10. Job interview with The Goldman Sachs Group Inc, as a Office Assistant/ Customer Service – Full Time/ Part Time (April, 2018)
        • Text came from 415-649-1082
        • They said they viewed your resume published on www.azjobconnection.gov
        • Ms. “KAREN P. SEYMOUR” (karenp.seymour03 “@” gmail.com), Hiring Manager  –IMPORTANT NOTE: There is a real Karen P. Seymour who works for the REAL Goldman Sachs but this one with a Gmail address is an imposter! (Read this pdf file of a Goldman-Sachs-Job-Interview  between “Karen” and one of our TDS readers!)
        • Given a verification code for the interview of “0909”
        • Email contact came from Joy Cianci <joycianci03 “@” gmail.com>
      11. Job interview as Data Entry Clerk, Administrative Assistant, and Customer Service Rep with The Energizer Company (April, 2018; UPDATED: February 14, 2019)
        • Delma Javinal, “Hiring Manager” for Energizer Holdings, Inc.
        • Priscilla M Lupo, Interviewer (prismarlup064 “@” gmail.com)
        • Richard Mattocks, “Hiring Manager” using cell phone 707-412-8373 to text job candidate
        • Robin Vaught, the Supervisor, told the job candidate to buy three $100 amazon gift cards for the candidate to use to buy office supplies
      12. Job interview as Executive Assistant with SGS Group (SGS is a multinational company headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland which provides inspection, verification, testing and certification services. ) (April 24, 2018)
        • Dr. Thorston Jahnke “Hiring Manager” –There is a REAL person by this name at the REAL SGS Group but this imposter gives out an email address at Gmail, not SGS.com:  hr.torstenjahnke “@” gmail.com
        • The imposter sent a fake cashier’s check for $4,900.00.  The bank informed the victim that the check was not valid.  Check out the offer letter sent to the victim from the scammer:
        • We had the victim send a fake deposit slip to the scammer and he fell for the fake.  By clicking the link, the scammer showed us that his location was Shinjuku, Japan OR that he was coming through a computer in this location but was located elsewhere.
      13. Job interview as a Graphic Designer for Alpha Graphics Design, located in Boston, Massachusetts.
        • Ann Yoset, senior manager in HR using the email: recruitment.alphagraphicsinc “@” gmail.com.
        • Someone also claimed to be the very real Regina Crowell who works at the real business but it was not the real Ms. Crowell.  The scammer was VERY clever because he purchased a domain that appears legitimate but it is not!  On May 7 he purchased AlphaGraphicsDesign[.]com and used it send an offer letter to this candidate.  The REAL Alpha Graphics company uses AlphaGraphics.com.
        • Here are a few screenshots taken of a portion of the conversation in Google Hangout including the offer for the job:
           And here is a copy of the offer letter sent to the candidate.
      14. Job interview as an Executive Administrative Assistant, Customer Service Representative, Bookkeeper, Virtual Data entry clerk, Dispatcher, Recruiter, Human resources manager, Human resources assistant, or Team Manager with Capital Group Companies Inc.  You are given a “verification code” such as CGC6025.
        • Mr. Barret ( louisbarret4 “@” gmail.com )
        • Sarah Nadji  (info “@” capitalgrouphr.us ) –NOTICE: The REAL Capital Group Company uses the website CapitalGroup.com.  These clever scammers registered the domain CapitalGroupHR[.]us on May 26, just 10 days before we heard about this scam!
          Here is a screenshot of the text that reveals the scam.  Mr. Barret says he will send a check to the “new hire” which will be used to provide initial salary AND be used to by the hired person to pay for things for the company. The check will bounce!  After the hired person uses their own real personal money to send to the scammer!
      15. Job interview as a Graphic Designer for Synacor, Inc. to “work from home.”  A check is sent for the purchase of an Apple computer, office furniture, printer, and office supplies.
        • Lisa Donohue, Senior Recruiter (The criminals have used 2 email addresses for “Lisa”…  Lisadonohue.synacorgraphics “@” gmail.com AND lisadonohue.synacor “@” gmail.com. Notice that both are with Gmail, not synacor.com) NOTE: The real Lisa Donohue was appointed to the Synacor Board of Directors in May, 2017 and these scammers stole the use of her name and made her a “Senior Recruiter”
        • Candidate was hired at the end of the Google Hangout interview and sent a check for $6898.37 to purchase “equipment” via moneygram.
        • Original email came from someone in HR at the domain synacorcareers[.]com registered on June 4, 2018.  This domain was just 2 days before the candidate was contacted.  It is not the real domain for Synacor, Inc.
        • Synacor-Offer-Letter sent by the scammers came from the fake email address hr “@” synacorcareers.com
        • Steve Davi, Graphics Design Team Leader (stevedavi042 “@” gmail.com) NOTE: There is a real Mr. Davi who works at Synacor.  His photo and name were stolen from his Linkedin account by the scammers and used to create a fake Google Hangouts profile.
        • Frank Levi, Human Resources (sent the candidate this SYNACOR-EMPLOYMENT-OFFER)
      16. Job interview as a Data Entry/Administrative Assistant Position with Verizon Communications Inc.
        • Initial contact from mrobinson “@” sbhconstruction.com
        • Ms. Sherry Hunter, Hiring manager (hiringdesk30 “@” gmail.com)
      17. Job interview for a job at Weber Shandwick as a Graphic Designer
        • Contact email came from webershandwickjobs “@” gmail.com
        • Alex Potnick from HR.  Alex’s email address is hr “@” webershandwick-career.com.  The domain webershandwick-career[.]com was registered on June 20, 2018, just 3 days before Mr. Potnick used it to hire the man who contacted us.
        • Interviewed by Ms. Jill Murphy  (jillmurphy.webershandwick “@” gmail.com)
        • Like other fake jobs, the person hired was told that “the following equipment will be delivered to your doorstep to set up your home office next week” and included:
          *Apple Mac Book Pro Laptop
          *Set of furniture *Copiers
          *Card Filing Systems
          *File Cabinets
          *File Folders
          *Graphics generator and software
          *Digital Storage
          *Inks and Ribbons
          *Surge Protectors and Automated Time Tracker
      18. Job interview with YHI International Limited for a job in Data Entry, Customer Service Representative, and Administrative Assistant (June, 2018)
        • Tom Payne (hiring1954 “@” zoho.com) from YHI International Limited
        • Andrew Gomez, the hiring manager using the email 19870hr “@” gmail.com
      19. Job interview with ManTech International Corporation.  NOTE: After “hiring” the candidate, the scammer sent a “check” via email, asked the candidate to print it and then use e-deposit to deposit it into her bank account immediately!  Don’t EVER do this! (June, 2018)
      20. Another job interview for Ahrens Construction in Australia again for a “virtual assistant” (July, 2018)
        • Sonia_recruit01 contacted the victim on Fiverr
        • Interview with Sandra Nelson, HR Officer, on Skype Chat (not video): live:jbruce4111
        • ORIENTATION OFFICER Bruce Brian Johnson; +17753720153  brucejohnson2314 “@” gmail.com
      21. Many job openings offered with Bestway Group. They claim to have openings for a Call Center Agent, Data Entry, Sales, Clerical Admin, Front Desk, Administrative Clerk/Assistance, Customer Service Receptionist, Financial Analyst, Medical Billing and Coding, Accounting, Payroll Clerk, Book keeping, Typist Clerk, Management, and IT jobs team.  You are given a “verification code” for your interview, like: Way-339. (July, 2018; Feb., 2019; UPDATED: March 24, 2019)
        • Mr Daniel Kipling, The HR Coordinator at Bestway Group
        • Mr Dawood Pervez, Trading Director for Bestway Group (hireforspring2018 “@” gmail.com) . “Hire for Spring 2018” at Gmail??  Don’t fall for email names like this!
        • Chris Errington using email bestjobsforfall “@” gmail.com(Added Feb. 2019)
        • Mr Rizwan Pervez, the Director of Bestway (Holdings) Ltd using email workforus2019 “@” gmail.com (Added Feb. 2019)
        • A TDS reader contacted us to say “I was emailed by someone from Bestway asking be to do an online interview via hangouts. I gave them a verification code, they had me answer 10 questions, and hired me saying I scored 8.5. They offered me abut 42 dollars an hour starting and informed me they were going to mail me a check for materials.”  The interviewer used the email workforus2019 “@” gmail.com
        • Interview was with Rizwan Pervez, Director of Bestway Holdings Ltd. Candidate was asked for the Interview verification code, BW905, and hired within minutes after just a few questions. Candidate was told they are opening new Best Way Group branches and he would be paid $44.30/hr for “tracking data and sorting documents” (record keeping) and must know Microsoft Office and accounting software. This is a “work at home” job. Mr. Pervez told the candidate that he would have to “fax and email confidently and have a positive attitude online from home.”
        • BEWARE this scam is still alive as of May 22, 2019.  A candidate was contacted for a military Administrative Assistant job position.  She was told to invite Mrs. April H. Smith, the Director of Best Way Group on Google Hangout or Google talk messenger with the email bestwayhumanresources “@” gmail.com.  She was told to use verification code: BWGINS556. (May 22, 2019)
      22. METKA GROUP  – A candidate looking for work contacted us on May 28, 2019 to say she was contacted by someone named Johnson Moore ( johnsonmoore652 “@” gmail.com )_about a job as an Administrative Assistant.  She was asked to contact Mr. “Collins Mills” for a Google Hangout interview. His email address was given as cllnsmills “@” gmail.com
        • Mr. Patrick Moore (Hiring Manager at Metka Group) +15612958476 (July, 2018)
        • Candidate was contacted via text message from Mr. Justice Peterman (254-253-5499)
          claiming to represent METKA GROUP and wanted her to interview with Mr. Collins Mills, using her email address cllnsmills “@” gmail.com. (June 27, 2019)
        • Candidate was contacted and hired by Kennedy Hode (hr.kennedyhodge “@” gmail.com) and Angela Banks (angelabanks081 “@” gmail.com) for an “executive administrative” postion.  Then she was sent a check for $3250 for office supplies which she deposited.  She sent $2400 immediately through a cash app as instructed.  Next day she learned the check bounced and was responsible for the money she sent. (August 20, 2019)
      23. Xerox Corporation – Mr. Larry Wills +14696081552 (July, 2018)
      24. Job as a Data Analyst for Manufacturer’s News Inc. (July, 2018)
        • John Fick texting candidates from 912-584-2659
        • Josh White conducted the intervew (He became angry with the many questions asked by the candidate to verify that this was a real job interview.  Finally, “Mr. White” made some intimidating remarks.)
      25. A  “recruiter” named “Jessica Adams” contacts from a company called “Sonova Company” and asks to interview the candidate using “IM” (Instant Messaging) instead of Google Hangouts!  The phone number that accompanied the text was “+1707-219-6402”. (August, 2018)
      26. This  job description was posted on the real site OhioMeansJobs.  Candidates were asked to send an email to “Barbara Hilton” at coordinator “@” amerirootbergen[.]org.  Turns out this domain, amerirootbergen[.]org was registered on August 8, just a few days before the job appeared.  The position was with a legitimate company called Buckeye Power, Inc.  These scammers seem to be spoofing the real website called AmerisourceBergen.com. (August, 2018)
        Other names used by these scammers include:

        • April Fitcher
        • Mr. Ivan Alfredo (hirirngmanager “@” amerirootbergen[.]org)
      27. Job interview with the company VeriFone, Inc. for a Data Entry/ Administrative Assistant position ($25.00 per hour). Candidate was contacted by “Tasha ” from Human Resources using the email tasha “@” trinityworldwide[.]com but asked to reply to “Tasha ” <tasha-trimityworldwide “@” mail. com> (including the error of a space after period and misspelled “triMity”) (August, 2018)
        • Asked to contact Hiring Manager “Jon Richardson” ( hiringdesk456 “@” gmail.com ) using a “verification ID code” for the interview process: VRI_88
        • UPDATE 7/10/2019: A candidate was asked to contact Barnes Hickman, the Hiring Manager of Verifone Inc. for an interview in Google Hangouts for a position as Customer Service Representative Position ($25 per hour once hired and training $11 per hour).   The Gmail address “Barnes” used was barneshickman215 “@” gmail.com.  Candidate was given a bogus “interview code” of VFI-0334.  The candidate knew it was a scam and told us that her Grammarly extention showed her that “Barnes Hickman” made 48 grammar/spelling mistakes during the interview!  Candidate was hired, of course when “Barnes” soon said “Due to your level of experience and communication skills, Verifone Inc. has decided to give you a chance for you to work for the company and will like to see your diligence,Charisma,Commitment to this job. congratulations !!!”
      28. Job interview for the position of Administrative Assistant on ZipRecruiter. (August, 2018)
        • Email contact came from Alexander Cooper < alexandercooper009 “@” gmail.com > who claims to represent the company called Moreton Resources Ltd.
        • Candidate is asked to contact department manager, Luke Colgan (  lukecolgan10 “@” gmail.com )
      29. Job interview for a national law firm called Ballard Spahr LLP.  The scammers said that the positions available are Executive Assistant, Payroll Clerk, Administrative Assistant, Customer Service, Data Entry, Call Center/ Medical Biller/Coding, and Bookkeeper.  Offered to pay $23/hour. (September, 2018)
        • Scammers pretended to be Denise Keyser, a long-time lawyer for the real firm.  They used the email address: hiringballardspahr “@” gmail.com and phone number 205-533-7195.
        • Scammer sent the “hired” person a fake check that looked as though it came from Barracks Construction company.
      30. Job interview with the company Real Ispat & Power Ltd., a manufacturing firm based in India, for positions as Customer Service Representative, Receptionist/Data Entry/Admin. Assistant. Salary offered was $25/hour. (Sept. 2018; Feb. 2019 ;UPDATED March 29,2019)
        • Human resources department representative Michael Bachelder using an AOL email address: mikebachelder “@” aol.com
        • Interviews were conducted via the company’s head of operation using the Google Hangout email “realispatdesk991 “@” gmail.com”
        • Contacted the victim using the email address mrbryanondesk “@” gmail.com
        • Candidate was contacted by someone named Jane Russell from phone # 512-829-8873 stating they had pulled his resume from Handshake to interview for Customer Service Rep, Data Entry Specialist, or Administrative Assistant for Real Ispat & Power LTD.  He was asked to interview HR Manager named Bryan Xiong, who used email mrbryanondesk “@” gmail.com. (March 29, 2019)
      31. Job interview with the organization Beat Sarcoma, Inc. for the position “Administrative Assistant/Data Entry.” The real domain is beatsarcoma.org.   However, the criminals registered the fake look-alike domain beatssarcoma.org on August 28. using a proxy service. (Notice the extra “s”).  (September, 2018) Fake contacts include:
        • HR Beatsarcoma: Aldon Hoover:hooveraldon109 “@” gmail.com
        • Head of Operation: Cindy Rody: cindyrody04 “@” gmail.com
        • HR Department: hr “@” beatssarcoma.org  (NOTICE: extra “s” in domain name)
      32. Harold Commons from Hendrick Automotive Group (by collecting resumes listed on Ohiomeansjobs.com) and using phone number 413-728-0329 (September, 2018 and again in December, 2018 through Jobisite.com) (UPDATED: July 23, 2019)
        • Interview with someone identified as Daisy Reed, Career Human Sources Representative, with email “drexec4040 “@” gmail.com”
        • Offer is for remote job and will send an Apple Laptop Computer containing “necessary software’s programs pre-installed” and an advance bonus check
        • Contacted by “Mr Andrea Bills” using phone number 615-763-5593; says you’ll be working with the program “Check Soft Home and Business, Quickbook, Microsoft Publisher, Sage and other programs.” (Dec, 2018)
        • Interview with Patty Luison, who supposedly works for HR Department and will conduct the interview via Hangouts. (Uses email address drlpatty681 “@” gmail.com) “Patty” starts out the interview by giving a short bio of her background and credentials, like most of these scams! (Dec, 2018) Candidate told she will need equipment like an Apple laptop and printer, and to complete one week’s training. She would be sent a check to pay for it, plus her first week’s salary. Candidate said no thank you to the job but gets a FedEx overnight envelope from ‘Stanley Mark’ of ‘Computer Label Inc’ including a cashier’s check for just under $1,500! It was a Citibank check with the name from “Stanley Mark” from Memphis, TN on it. The candidate discovered that the name and address on the check were identical to a sample posted online by Fedex for making a label!
        • Candidate was found through the National Careers Fair website and contacted on Tuesday, Jul 23, 2019.  She was sent interview questions from the email address:  Question-desk@hendrick.com <Questions-desk@representative.com> NOTICE that this email looks like it came from “hendrick.com” but actually comes from a free email account at “representative.com.”  The interviewer claimed to be “Steve Davis” of HendrickCars.com and was interviewing the candidate for the position of a “Marketing Analyst.”  Pay was offered at $60/hr after 5 days online training period during which candidate was to be paid $25/hr during the 2-4 training each day.  The candidate asked “Steve Davis” to prove who he was and a minute later was sent this photo of a man wearing a shirt with a Hendrick Auto logo.  But this is not a picture of the real Steve Davis, based on Steve’s LinkedIn account!The candidate was asked a series of interview questions and we found some of these questions from an online article titled “Top Marketing Interview Questions.” (The website was hacked and is not safe to provide a link to our readers.)  Candidate was hired for the job and sent his contract from the email address hendrickauto@resourcedpt.com –a bogus email address and signed by someone named “Geremy Oliver.”
      33. NOT SURE IF THIS IS A GOOGLE HANGOUT SCAM BUT IT IS A SCAM JOB INTERVIEW OFFER:  Automated call comes from “Sarah” calling from a “non-profit recruitment firm” representing kids.org, amazonkids.org or webstorejobs.org. (September, 2018)
        • Called from both 423-250-2992 and 850-842-6460
        • Other websites reporting this as an employment scam include BBB.org and Komando.com.
      34. Job as a “3D & 2D” Animator of Ads for the fashion business called ASOS USA.  Scammers found the candidate’s resume on Indeed.com.  Asked the candidate to send a copy of her driver’s license, as well as other personal info. (October, 2018)
        • Interview in Google Hangouts with someone named “Vivica Ron” using the email address “asosjobvillage2018 “@” gmail.com”
        • Represented themselves as Denise Walter & Theresa May
        • asosanimationcareers “@” gmail.com
      35. Job as “Administrative Assistant/Data Entry Clerk” for Wanda Group Company at the rate of $35/hour and “you will be able to participate in a number of company sponsored benefits.” (October, 2018 AND January, 2019)
        • “HR Manager” named William White using email wandagrouphrmanager “@” gmail.com
        • Name on fake contract was “Mr. Robert Williams,” Title: “Superior”
        • In January, 2019 a victim told us he found this job posted for “Data Entry clerk” on PeoplePerHour.com, by someone named “Garry.” Garry then asked the victim to chat with William White.  “Mr. White” hired him after a 10 minute chat!  Two days later he received the following check via Fedex from a Florida residential address for $15,000:The check came with the following letter from a Mr. Colton Green of the “Payment Department” using the email address Accountingdesk “@” usa.com. (So many scams have used the free email service at usa.com that they have posted this warning on their website.)Good Day,
          How are you doing ? We hope the package got to you in good health. This is Colton Green from the payment department and you are required to manage these funds as instructed by your employer/hiring manager online. You are to get back to us via email with the information on the following:
          1. How the funds were used.
          2. Exact amount used.
          3. Whom you ordered or got the materials from.
          4. The Deposit Slip/ Receipt is also required.Here is the email to reply: Accountingdesk “@” usa.com
          NOTE: If you are being told to discard the letter, do not do such. You must keep us informed on the check and its funds from your email (by yourself) and not from your employer’s email. Failure to do this is against the company’s protocol.Also,don’t forget to email us at Accountingdesk “@” usa.com
          once you receive the check to confirm delivery.Kind Regards,
          Mr. Colton Green
          Payment DepartmentThe victim had found this article detailing this scam and even identifying the fake HR Manager “William White.”  He shared the link to this web page with the scammer and the scammer told him that it was just a competitor’s business trying to discredit them!  Read the text exchange…
      36. Job as “Data Entry Clerk” for an Indian Company called Essar Group at the rate of $20-$25 per hour. (October, 2018)
        • Interview in Google Hangouts with someone named “Jon Richardson” using the email address hiringgdesk456 “@” gmail.com
      37. Job interview for Abbot Risk Consulting for positions of Data Entry Administrative Clerk, and Management says an email from someone claiming to be Mr Timothy Cole, The HR Coordinator at Abbott Risk Consulting Ltd.  They offer $27.95 Per hour plus incentives.  There were many contacts offered to those invited to apply for the jobs.  Notice that ALL of them use Gmail addresses, rather than the email accounts for the REAL Abbot Risk Consulting company! (November, 2018)
        • Mr Weather, The HR Coordinator at Abbott Risk Cosulting.
        • Mr Victor Davis, the Research & Recruitment for Abbott Risk Consulting Ltd. on Gmail Hangout or Google talk messenger (victordavis.hiringoffice “@” gmail.com)
        • Mrs Tasha, the Research & Recruitment for Abbott Risk Cosulting on Gmail Hangout or Google talk messenger (hireforabbott “@” gmail.com)
        • Mr Mathias Gavin, The HR Coordinator at Abbott Risk Consulting Ltd.
        • Mr Berlin Allen, the Research & Recruitment for Abbott Risk Consulting Ltd on Gmail Hangout or Google talk messenger (berlinallen1313 “@” gmail.com)
      38. Job interview for Kestrel Investment Partners for positions as Data Entry, Management, Clerical Admin, Front Desk, Administrative Clerk/Assistance, Customer Service Receptionist, and several other positions. They say they are “soon setting up a branch near your location.”  The candidate was hired quickly to work from home and told they would send her a check to buy equipment. (November, 2018)
        • Chris Errington, Head of Research (conducts the interview)
        • Mr. George Douglas, HR Manager using the email hireforspring “@” gmail.com (Note: This email address was used for fake job #21 above!)
      39. Job interview for “National Health Care Associates Centers.” Candidates are given a bogus verification code to provide to their interviewers such as “TPQBL-101” for position as Administrative Assistant and Data Entry.  Candidates told they can work from home; $21/hr during training and then $30/hr. (November, 2018)
        • Mrs. Julissa Dizon, Personnel Manager (julissadizon “@” gmail.com)
        • Lorts Yeaton, Human Resources Dept. (lortsyeaton “@” gmail.com)
      40. Job interview for Terex Company.  These scammers have posted a fake job web page at Angel.co.  However, the REAL Terex Company posts their jobs on their own website at jobs.terex.com.  In fact, the REAL Terex Company has posted a warning about these very scams!  Visit their jobs page and look in the upper right corner for the warning information. (November, 2018)
        • A supervisor named “Nathan” claimed to be the hiring manager (nathan.supervisor02 “@” gmail.com)
        • Contact person used the emails terexrecruitmentteam “@” gmail.com and Terexcareers “@” execs.com
      41. The Scammers claim to be from The Essar Group Ltd., an Indian company but operating out of Houston Texas and hiring for a data entry position. They offer $20 an hour for a two week training period and then $25 an hour once training is complete.  After a short and simple interview, they “hired” the candidate and are sending her a check! DON’T CASH IT! (November & December, 2018) And again for a job as a “Customer Service Representative Position” at the rate of $25 and $28/hr. (January/February, 2019)
        • Melissa Drew using email address hiringdesk30 “@” gmail.com
        • Audrey Loranger, Hiring Manager who conducted the interview (email: interview.hrdesk01 “@”gmail.com)
        • Susan Hayes (Dec. ’18), using email address officedeskiolcp200 “@” gmail.com, interviewed the victim by asking her 15 questions.  Tells victim to download and install her banking app because it will allow her to deposit the check immediately and have it clear. (NOT TRUE!) Victim said she could not do that so the scammer asked the victim how long it will take for her to drive to her bank and deposit the check!  The victim suspected fraud and actually told Susan Hayes that this sounded like fraud. “Susan’s” response? “Everything done here is 100% legit We don’t run scam here”
        • Contact by someone named “William Richie” using email williamrichie40 “@” gmail.com (Jan, 2019)
        • Interview with the “Interview Manager” named “Mrs. Elizabeth” using the email address elizabethderick40 “@” gmail.com. Asked to use the “Job Verification code W2-568486” (Jan, 2019)
        • Interview with “Mrs. Susan Hayes” using email address officedeskiolcp200 “@” gmail.com.  And told “Your verification code during the interview process is EHT99.” (Jan, 2019)
        • Email came from “Human Resources” using the email “alberto “@” glcon.com” for a position at Essar described as “Full time /Part Time Administrative Assistant/ Data Entry/ Customer Service Position.”  The recipient was asked to meet “Mr. Tommie Lynch” the Hiring Manager in Google Hangouts through his email “officedesk920 “@” gmail.com.” (February, 2019)
      42. Job interview with Sonova Group, a manufacturer of hearing care solutions.
        • Ms. Jessica Adams contacts the candidate saying she has reviewed your resume
        • HR Manager, Grace Danielle who first says in Google Hangout “I received my BA in the UK . I am a part of the recruiting team.”  She asks a bunch of lame questions like…
          • “Do you consider yourself a team player?”
          • “Do you have a printer?”
          • “Why should we hire you?”
          • “Do you consider yourself successful?” ….and more.
        • Once hired, the candidate was asked to email information to Mellownee Kelly  at hiringtalent111 “@” gmail.com
      43. Peterson and Control Union, as represented by onepeterson.com. The Google Hangout Interview and job offer happened in a matter of minutes, with the job offer going from $50/hr to $200/hour with very little negotiation, according to the victim.  The victim was then sent a check for $7,650 to be deposited in his account and used to purchase required office equipment etc. from the company’s “preferred supplier” for office equipment. (January, 2019)
        • Victim interviewed by someone pretending to be Sarah Moore, Director for Projects at the real Peterson and Control Union, but fake Sarah used the email sarahmoore4peterson “@” gmail.com    The Real Sarah Moore can be found on the real website for this company.
      44. COMPANY NOT IDENTIFIED: A victim informed us on 1/12/19 that someone named “Susan Banks” posted a job opportunity on a local Facebook page called “Mansfield Helping Mansfield.” The email addresses to contact are jessicaleesmith95 “@” gmail.com and jessmduncan95 “@” gmail.com. The victim asked for the name of the company but was never given that information. The HR person for this unknown company was named “Jessica Leesmith” and she provided background info on the job and the Interview code HRDR873. The victim was told to provide this Interview code in Google Hangouts when she interviewed with a “Jesse Duncan” using the email Jesseduncan95 “@” gmail.com. This company was hiring for an online, work from home job paying $35/hour after a $21/hour training week.
      45. Job interview with SYNNEX Corporation.  Victim was contacted through his Indeed.com account by someone named “Mrs. Susan Cooley” for a job working from home. (January, 2019)
        • Google Hangout Interview with “Peter Cross,” Chief Information Officer and Hiring Manager (he says he is age 57 –the person doing the interview often says how old they are!)
        • Told that the job pays $28/hr and $18/hr during training hours
        • The scam is set up when the victim is told “All Equipment’s and Software’s are to be purchased from the company’s accredited vendor.”  That means you’ll be sent a check to deposit and then send your money to the scammer!
        • In May, 2019 candidate was contacted by “Kimberly Porcaro” about a home data entry position with Synnex Corp. and asked to reach out to James Foltz, in HR.
        • On July 11, 2019 we were contacted by a woman who said she received a text from a man named “William Walter” (telephone: 515-519-2920) and was invited to interview for a job at Synnex Corp. in Google Hangouts.
      46. Job interview with Century West Partners.  (Details not provided by victim.) (January, 2019)
      47. COMPANY NOT IDENTIFIED: A victim sent us an email she received.  It was a job invitation from “Josh A Wingstrom” using email address “joshawingstrom125 “@” gmail.com.  Josh invited the recipient to a “job briefing and interview” in Google Hangout for a position as an “administrative assistant.”  No company was mentioned but the pay was listed at $25/hr.
        • Interview with Hiring Manager named “Meaghan Campbell” using email address “meaghancampbell123 “@” gmail.com” . An interview verification code was provided: TCI-028.
      48. Vacancy for Administrative Assistant with Alpha-Pharma Healthcare came from a woman identified as Rose Bickford, HR Assistant. Pay is listed at $30/hr and $18/hr during training. They say they plan to open an office in Austin, TX later in the year (where the victim lives) but are currently based in Mumbai, India. During the interview the HR Manager says assignments will be sent from your supervisor via email. (February, 2019)
        • Interview with Mr. Christopher Stillman, Hiring Manager, in Google Hangouts using email “mrchristopherstillman “@” gmail.com”
        • Victim was asked to email all her details to the “company HR Mrs. Emily Cohman” at the email address: info “@” alpha-pharmahealthcare[.]com.  This domain may look legitimate but IT IS NOT!  The legitimate business domain is alpha-pharma.com.  But “alpha-pharmahealthcare[.]com” was registered on January 17, less than 3 weeks before the “candidate” was targeted by this scam!
      49. Vacancy for Administrative Assistant with MetLife. Google Hangout job interview through the MetLife Recruiting Desk.  Victim is told that MetLife will be setting up an office in her area. “Candidate” is asked to set up a home office and told that she’ll be buying office equipment from a certified vendor. (February, 2019)

        • Victim is asked to contact the Human Resources staff named Christan Robison (or Robinson; the scammers spell it both ways!) in Google Hangouts through his MetLife email “metlifecareerteam “@” gmail.com”
        • A woman was interviewed on August 20, 2019 by someone claiming to be “Mrs Abby Flores, 51 years of age, the Chief Customer Officer/Hiring Manager of METLIFE INSURANCE COMPANY, A native of California and graduated with bachelor of arts degree from Saint Mary’s College of California. In addition, I am a member of METLIFE INSURANCE COMPANY’s Executive Committee.”  Mrs. Flores says she was interviewing for people for positions as Customer Service Rep, IT, Data Entry, and Typist.  She told the candidate “You’ll earn $22 hourly; you will receive your pay via direct deposit or pay check weekly or Bi-weekly.”  She also convinces the candidate that her Facebook account has be “synchronized” and gets her to give up her account login credentials.
      50.  A woman was contacted by several people on February 6-7, 2019 who claim to be from various companies. All of them invited her for a job interview in Google Hangouts. They included:
        •  Lisa from Manpower Group, and phone number 301-660-7581 for an Administrative Position. Lisa told the woman to invite “Mrs. Jammie” with email jammiestep303 “@” gmail.com
        • Clara from Apptio Software Company through phone number 717-742-4127, to apply for Receptionist/front Desk Position. Clara told the woman to invite Mrs. Rachel Bailey, the Interview Manager through Google Hangouts for the Job Interview using Rachel Bailey’s email address: rachelbailey031 “@” gmail.com
        • Darlene Hunter, using email hr.workforce101 “@” gmail.com and claiming to represent Du Pont (DuPont) Company contacted her about a job as a Customer Service Representative/Administrative Assistant.  Darlene told her to contact Mr. Allen Lopez, the Interview Manager, for a interview in Google Hangout via the email: hr.reviewdesk “@” gmail.com. She was given the verification code AGS 0811.
        • Victoria Phillip, using email victoriaphillip9 “@” gmail.com contacted the woman about a position as a Receptionist/Front Desk Position. Again, she is asked to contract Mrs. Rachel Baily, the Interview Manager using the email address rachelbailey031 “@” gmail.com. The invitation code this time is 3GQ
      51.  Candidate was invited to interview with Mr. Thomas Banks (424-282-9910) from Quantum Pharmaceutical Company via Skype.  However, the Skype interview turned out NOT to be by video chat but by text chat. (February, 2019)
      52. Candidate received an email from “David” from Allegis Group through the email Human Resources (hr “@” human-resources[.]org.  This email sounds official but “human-resources[.]org” was registered years ago in Sweden and Google finds no website or information about this domain name. Candidate was invited to apply for Customer Service Rep/ Administrative Assistant job. (February,2019)
        • Asked to contact Mrs Matt through email annematt231 “@” gmail.com for a Google Chat interview
      53. Candidate was told there was a vacancy for Administrative Assistant/Virtual Assistant with Baptist Health. The location was listed as Reynoldsburg, Ohio. However, the position was advertised as being remote, from home. (February, 2019)
        • Contacted by Mindy Chanda, HR Assistant via email: info4 “@” recruitmenterdesk.com
        • The interview will be with Mr. Christopher Stillman the company Hiring Manager who uses email:  mrchristopherstillman “@” gmail.com
      54. Candidate was contacted twice about work at home jobs through her Facebook account!(February, 2019)
        • Interview with Temmy Ayo for job with DXC.com . Victim is asked to pay for equipment for home including a computer and printer, for which she will be reimbursed.
        • Donating money to the poor and orphans, $5000, for the company Martini.com . Contact from someone named Uranaa Uchral.  The candidate was asked to contact rosalinepaola57 “@” gmail.com, WhatsAPP: +22969587395.  Job is payroll, receiving and posting checks for employees, for which you get paid 3 times per week!
      55. Vacancy as Administrative Assistant with D&M Appraisal Inc, located in Murfreesboro, TN, USA.  Supposedly, the company specializes in the Design, Development and Production of Quality Plastic Injection Moldings for the Manufacturing Industry.
        • Candidate is told she would have to pass a “TEST OF DUTY/TRUST”
          “Test of duty/trust would involve you handling funds on behalf of the company to purchase the needed software and also to handle the shipment of your mini office equipment. The test of trust is your first call to duty, this will be your first assignment before you begin your training.You will receive a payment from my associate via mail which will also cover your wage for this week as well as all other purchases and payments needed to be made to facilitate the shipment of your home office gadget to you. I will update you further on this by giving you a comprehensive list on how to go about them.”
        • HR assistant named Josephine Laura used the email address estate2018 “@” lycos.com
        • Victim was sent a check for $2950 and asked to deposit it immediately. Then to use money from it to purchase Amazon gift cards and Apple iTunes gift cards, scratch them and send a photo of the numbers to the scammer!
      56. Candidate was invited to interview for a job as an Office Admin Assistant /Customer Service Representative/Data Clerk Position with the financial firm IGM FINANCIAL INC.  However, the email came from the address Goldman Sachs <info “@” apploi.com> and the email began with the header “A Note From Goldman Sachs.”  IGM Financial has nothing to do with Goldman Sachs!(March,2019)
        • Reply to address was listed as jamesholson08 “@” gmail.com
        • Candidate was asked to schedule the interview in Google Hangouts with HR Manager Mr. Dennis Fields, who uses the email dennis.fields01 “@” gmail.com.
        • Candidate was asked to use the Verification/Hiring code: “IGM – 8M515”
      57. Candidate was invited to interview for a Data Entry job for Intuit Company (Intuit Services.) Candidate given interview code REC0124 by someone named Jennifer E Smith.  For this data entry job the candidate was to receive training on “how to work with the programs.” Candidate was hired and asked for her bank account number, routing number, address, username and password! They claimed to need those details in order to process the first payment.(March 23, 2019)
        • Mrs. Makayla Randy, Hiring Manager for Intuit Company listed her email as intuitcompanyrecruit “@” gmail.com
      58. A woman contacted us on March 23, 2019 to say that she found 3 scam jobs posted on Fiverr.com:
        • PSA Corporation LTD. Candidates were asked to contact Mrs. Kimberly Williams, Head of Operations via email recruitingdesk303 “@” gmail.com
        • Solar Trade Association. Candidates were asked to contact Mr. Todd Stegall, Hiring Manager via email hiringmanagerunitdept “@” gmail.com. Scammers asked candidate to use the verification code Solar0988887777
        • Job posting from “Lawrence” for the company Viacom. Candidates were asked to contact Mrs. Bronwyn Sowden, Human Resources Manager via email sowden “@” viacomscareers.com. Scammers asked candidate to use the verification code NN547.  NOTE: viacomscareers.com is NOT the same as viacom.com!
      59. Candidate was contacted privately through LinkedIn by “Sherill Thomas” in first week of April, 2019 to say that there was a job opening for a Graphic Designer at Game Stop Corporation.  Same Google Hangout basic interview questions.  Hired the next day.(April, 2019)
        • Interviewed by a Juna Jones Moore at a Gmail account.  She told the candidate after being hired they were going to set up accounts at approved vendors for him to pick up equipment.
      60. On April 24, 2019 a TDS reader received a text about a job interview. She was texted by 512-829-8873 saying it was “Sarah Middendorf” of a company called Link Group. Sarah Middendorf said she “pulled my resume from handshake” and would like to give her an online interview. Our TDS reader knew immediately it was a scam and didn’t reply.
      61. We first heard about these fake jobs on April 30, 2019 from a woman who was asked to interview in Google Hangouts with a woman representing herself as “Susan Hayes” from CapGemini Consulting Services but did not provide us with any additional information.  And then on May 19 a woman who identified herself as “Sherry Morgan” texted a TDS reader from cell phone 248-436-3453. Sherry Morgan  claimed to represent CapGemini and asked the candidate to contact the hiring manager. (April, May, June & July, 2019)
        • Hiring Manager identified as Audrey Loranger, using email address interview.hrdesk01 “@” gmail.com. The candidate was told to use the interview code ‘ALCCB88’
        • One day after the Google Hangouts interview was over (It was minutes long.) the candidate was offered the job, and instructions as to what to do next. This included getting a check in advance to pay for the office equipment that would shipped.  Her bank told her the check was fraudulent!  Here’s what “Audrey Loranger” said to the candidate:Audrey Loranger writes: Mon, May 20, 7:54 AM
          “The check for your working materials will be mailed out to you
          today/tomorrow. You should be having the check in your mailbox between the next 24-48 hours. I will provide you the FedEx or USPS tracking number for the check once I have it on my deskWhen you receive the check, Head to your Bank Teller and have the check deposited into your account, funds will be made available instantly or next day. Send me a screenshot of the deposit confirmation receipt with your account number hidden for record purposes.When the funds are available for you to make the purchase of the working materials, you will be required to make the payment from the private vendor which is approved and recommended by the company. I will be here to instruct you on how to make the payment from the vendor when the fund is available. We have our reasons for this because the software and office equipment are specified by the company. The vendor will install the software programs into the Mac Book before mailing them out to you. This will help both you and the company to enable you to start your training as soon as possible when you receive the working materials”
        • Another candidate contacted us to say she received an invitation from email hr.officedesk001 “@” gmail.com to interview on Google Hangouts with someone identified as “Connor Robinson” using email officedesk001 “@” gmail.com. Mr. Robinson asked her a few interview questions and she got the job within 2-3 days. He told her that he was going to send a check for the home office equipment that she needed for the data entry/administrative assistant position since this was a work-from-home job earning $25 an hour.  The next day she received a check for $3,980.60. However, the address and company name on the check didn’t even match the company Capgemini. The check said it came from Pacific General Construction, which had nothing to do with the company she was hired for. Also, she told us that Mr. Robinson’s Google profile showed that he is a white American but when the candidate actually called the phone number listed, she claimed that Mr. Robinson had an accent and sounded like an African American. Also, she said he had someone whispering and speaking to him in the background so something felt way off.
        • A man contacted us on June 22nd, 2019 to say he was texted by someone named Melissa Cooke.  Ms. Cooke said that his resume had been approved and asked if he was still interested in a work-from-home job for $25/hour.  Melissa Cooke instructed him to download Google hangouts for a job interview, gave him an interview “code” and then instructed him to contact “Audrey Loranger” from Capgemini for the interview. NOTE: Another woman contacted us on June 28, 2019 with this exact same experience.  She was asked 16 “qualifying interview questions” including “What are you most proud of” and “Are you a better planner or implementer.”
        • On June 28, 2019 a woman contacted us to say that she received an email from a Rebecca Samek (rebeccasamek3 “@” gmail.com) who also texted her from 970-715-1132. Then “Rebecca” sent her an email address for her google hangouts interview: sarahfoster4311v “@” gmail.com.
        • A woman told us that someone named “Evelyn Andre” from Capgemini Global Consulting Services, sent her a text on Saturday, July 13, at 8:06 pm (Central Time) about a job opportunity in Data Entry/Administrative Assistant for $20-25/hour.  Evelyn said that she found the woman’s resume on CareerBuilder.com.  Evelyn said she should send a message to Mrs. Maureen in Google Hangout now using the email Hiring.campbell.desk001 “@” gmail.com and then give a verification code for the interview process: ATN_01.
        • We were contacted on July 15, 2019 by a woman who said that she received a text from a “Bernita Thompson” (bernitathompson81 “@” gmail.com) via 614-4346615, stating that she should reach out on “Hangouts” for a data entry job interview with “Darlene Banks”  (Darlenebanks01 “@” gmail.com) from the company Capgemini.  After a brief interview in Google Hangouts, she “got the job.”
        • On July 18, 2019 a woman reported that she received texts from both “Alexandra Morgan” (361-371-0530) AND “Larry George” (915-243-0576) saying her resume had been approved and invited to interview with Capgemini for a Data Entry / Administrative Assistant position. Alexandra said it paid $25/hr and Larry said $28/hr.  The victim was told to download Google Hangouts from the App Store or Play store, and then contact Mrs. Donna Watkins through her Google Hangouts Gmail hrdesk.donnarecruiter46 “@” gmail.com.  Victim was given an interview code “CBCP_0201.”  Based on the language “Mrs. Watkins” used in the interview, TDS is reasonably certain she was from Africa, very likely Nigeria.
        • Apparently, the scammers like the name “Morgan” because they’ve used it several times claiming to represent Capgemini.  On July 24, 2019 a woman told us that she was contacted by an agent (from phone number 361-371-0530) who gave the name Alexandra Morgan.  The candidate was supposed to use Google Hangouts to contact the “manger” Jacqueline Henderson, via her email:  cageminihrdesk001 “@” gmail.com.
        • A woman contacted us on July 30 after her 7:30 AM interview with Capgemini HR staff.  She was contacted by Mr. Thomas Ferguson, texting from 209-264-2513 who asked if she wanted to apply for a “data entry/administrative assistance position with a pay of $25 hourly.”  The candidate was asked to contact Mrs. Maureen F. Campbell who uses email address Hiring.campbell.desk001 “@” gmail.com.
      62. Candidate was invited to interview with a “Mr Matt Rosenzweig” via Google Hangouts who claims to be a recruiter at Marcus & Millichap, Inc.  The candidate told us that a “nice touch” to the scam was that the person pretending to represent Marcus & Millichap included their logo in the text chat.  Mr. Rosenzweig used a Gmail address and set up his scam by telling the candidate he would receive a check in the mail and was required to use it to make purchases from their “approved vendor.” (May, 2019)
        • Mr. Rosenzweig texted “Enumerated are the list of the office supplies and tools to setup your mini Office and time tracker to calculate your daily hours to be purchased before you can start the job fully. Complete range of office supplies and equipment to set up your home office *Apple MacBook Pro Laptop *All-in one Printer *Card Filing *File Folders* generator and software*Digital Storage *Inks and Ribbons *Surge Protectors and Automated Time Tracker Apple MacBook Pro 15-inch Touch Bar Core i7 2.9GHz, 16GB, 512GB*Wacom Cintiq 22HD Pen Display*All in One Printer *Card Filing *Adobe Creative Cloud *Wacom EODIS3-DCWA Color Manager *Surge Protectors and Automated Time Tracker. Complete softwares programs time tracker to calculate your daily duties. You will receive a payment (check) this payment (check) will be used to set up your mini office by purchasing the office equipment and software so that you can start your training immediately.
          NOTE : All materials are to be purchased from the company accredited vendor, I will provide you with the vendor’s information when you receive the check.”
      63. On May 13, 2019 a woman contacted us to report that she was contacted via email by someone claiming to be Kerry Jiang, Business Development Manager/Human Resource Manager at GMP Pharmaceuticals.
        • Interview was set up in Google Hangouts with “Mr. Craig Byrnes Hiring Manager” from GMP Pharmaceuticals via a text from the phone number 424-900-2962.  He used the email address: hr.craigbyrnes “@” gmail.com.  Notice it is a Gmail address!
        • Available Positions: Customer Service, Office Manager, Medical Transcriptionist, Certified Nurse Assistant, Virtual Administrative Assistant,Data Entry and Sales Manager for both full & part-time positions paying $23-$52/hr.
      64. On May 14, 2019 a woman was reading this very article about Google Hangout Job scams when she received a text from 650-517-3203 from someone who identified himself as “Mrs. Garfield Holloway” about positions available for “Accounting Clerk,Front Desk,Bookeeper, and many more open positions.” We don’t know the company Garfield Holloway claimed to represent.
        • Candidate was asked to contact Mr. Peter Wendell, the HR Recruiter, to have an interview in Google Hangouts using his email address: peterwendell194 “@” gmail.com
      65. Woman was contacted by a man  who claims to be “Vladimir Ilievski” (vladimirilievski8 “@” gmail.com) working for CDC pharmaceuticals. (May 25, 2019)
      66. Candidate was contacted by “James White” from Diamond Green Diesel, using the phone number 346-333-1719.  Mr. White said that the candidate’s resume was sent to them by LinkedIn, an obvious lie.  The candidate was asked to contact “Lora Mike” vis Google Hangouts using his email address interviewdesk247 “@” gmail.com.  “Lora Mike” also sent the candidate interview questions via email to expect in the interview.  In that email, the scammer claimed:
        • “This is strictly an online and work from home position,were all duties are performed remotely online” (Notice the misspelling)
        • “You will be responsible for maintaining client/employee records, and distribute copies of compliance documentation to appropriate branch staff based on company approved standardized paper flow.”
      67. Candidate spent 2 hours in a Google Hangout interview with someone named Romy Werke from CTF Solar.  “Romy Werke” used the email address romy.ctfsolar “@” gmail.com.  Candidate was told be receiving a check to purchase a required laptop and software. (June, 2019; Updated Aug. 9, 2019)
        • Candidate was contacted via email from “CTF Solar Recruiter” using email mark.esmart2 “@” gmail.com
        • Candidate was told “Our Talent Acquisition Specialist has received, reviewed and approved the resume you posted and you have been shortlisted for an online interview because we believe you meet the desired criteria. The open positions are Phone Representative, Data Entry Representative, Content Marketing Manager, Administrative Assistant, Sales Associate, IT Management and Customer Service/Call Center Representative” and given a reference code of (CTF-6090).
        • On August 9, 2019 a woman informed us that she received an email from a headhunter out-of-the-blue named Fatima, using email: fatimafrank.hr “@” gmail.com.  Fatima told the candidate that a “Paula Ramirez would contact her and she had to go through Google Hangout.  Paula’s email was paularamirez.ctfsolar “@” gmail.com
          She was offered the job at the end of her interview of course but never responded after finding our article.  Then she got a text from Mr. Nathan Ray, Head of HR and wanting to know if she was still interested. His phone number was 205-463-1843.
      68. Candidate was contacted when the scammer said he had found the candidate via Ziprecruiter. Candidate was asked to schedule an electronic interview with the Hiring Manager Mr. Kelvin Hasson, representing “BOGDAN COOPERATION” (Misspelled!  It should have been “Corporation”) via Mr. Hasson’s email address: hiredesk011 “@” gmail.com. (June,2019; Aug 21, 2019)
        • Candidate given a sorting code for the interview as “11199003”
        • Candidate was contacted via email from “Mr. Richard Moore” who claimed to be a Human Resources Associate, part of the Ziprecreuiter HR Team.
        • On Aug. 21 a woman informed us that she was invited to interview in Google Hangouts with “Mrs. Patricia Wanders” who used email wandersp928 “@” gmail.com.  Mrs. Wanders explained the meaning of an “online interview” as if to justify that this method is a legitimate interview method.  TRUST US, IT IS NOT!  Mrs. Wanders tells the candidate that the job is a “work-at-home” job paying $30/hr and $19/hr while training. During the interview, one of the questions asked was “In terms of been a Workaholic, if you were an animal, which one would you want to be?” (We’ve recently heard from other victims that they have been asked a similar question.) The candidate was hired after a 30 min. text conversation and Mrs. Wanders stepped away for 3 min. to talk with her boss.  And the fake check’s in the mail!  The victim is told that she should deposit the check into her bank account and the funds will be available in less than 24 hours because “the check is a company’s certified check.” TOTAL BULL!  That check will bounce in 3-5 days!
      69. Candidate received an email saying “Dear Potential Applicant, The Hiring Department of Ameriprise Financial Company Services and our recruitment team reviewed your resume Via ziprecruiter.com… Blah, blah, blah.  Email came from “Leo Williams” using a generic Gmail account managerwilliams4 “@” gmail.com. (June, 2019; August 13, 2019)
        • Candidate was asked to add Ms. Ellen Zentner on Google hangouts using her email address: ellenzentner1 “@” gmail.com and use the verification code is CR-5709BI.
        • Woman received a text from 575-404-1685 saying it was “Lauren Greene” from Ameriprise Financial Company on 6/17/19.  “Lauren” found woman’s resume on Ziprecruiter and invited the candidate to interview with Ms. Ellen Zentner on Google hangouts
        • Woman was contacted via text number 706-204-1443 and asked to interview with Mrs. Kelli H. Petruzillo from Ameriprise Financial Company. The interviewer in Google Hangouts asked her 17 questions including “How much training do you think you need to become a productive employee?” and “What’s your sim carrier?”
      70. Candidate was contacted through Freelancer.com and asked to interview via SKYPE for the position of a Graphic Designer with Telfort Communications. (In Amsterdam) But the interview was a text-only interview! No video chat.(June, 2019; August 14, 2019)
        • Interview was with a Mrs. Callaghan Austin Dean in Skype chat window. She told the candidate “All we need from you is good work and trust and you will enjoy every moment working with us.”
        • Candidate was sent an email of a fake contract from Sam Anderson, Chief Human Resources Officer for Telfort Communications.
        • Candidate was contacted by Sara Ao Xiaomei (saraaoxiaomei “@” gmail.com) and told to interview in Google Hangout.  Offered the job from fake “Sam Anderson” Chief Human Resources Officer, Telfort Telecommunications Company again on August 14, 2019.  Here is page 1 of the 3 page contract he was sent to be in Accounting:
      71. Candidate received an email from a man identified as Warren Finegold (warrenfinegold290 “@” gmail.com) who claimed to represent MAGONTEC LIMITED.  She was asked to apply for the position of Administrative Assistant by visiting Google Hangout for an interview.
        • Interview was scheduled with Mark Mcgrath, Department Manager. (markmcgrath273 “@” gmail.com) (June, 2019)
      72. A gentleman contacted us to say that he had just finished an interview process in Google Hangout with someone pretending to be the real Vice President of legal and corporate affairs for the Cronos Group, someone named Xiuming Shum. Please note that the emails “from” address was the Cronos group but when the candidate clicked on the address he told us that it was XiumingShum.cronos “@” gmail.com instead.  Here’s the timeline described to us…
        • June 11: received the job description and was told to go on Google hangout. Also, he received the interview questionnaire.
        • June 13: received an email saying he was selected for the position.
        • June 14: received employment agreement letter along with a list of equipment that the candidate would need for his training. The training was for four hours per day for two weeks. The new office would be open in 5 to 10 weeks. During this conversation with the scammers they mentioned sending a check to the candidate so he could pay for the equipment and for his initial training time.
      73. A gentleman contacted us on June 18, 2019 to say that he had been invited by CORNELIA RON <hrcornelia.ron “@” gmail.com> of Vifor Pharma Group, a global pharmaceutical company, to interview for the job of “Executive Administrative Assistant.” He was supposed to have this interview in Google Hangouts with someone named Mrs. Connie Tanner (Hrmrsconnietanner “@” gmail.com)
      74. Another man contacted us on 6/27/19 to say that he was offered a job as “Customer Service Representative and sent the contract below to sign after going through the Google Hangout interview process with Mrs. Connie Tanner
      75. On July 6, a woman contacted us about a job offer from Novartis Group, Headquartered in Basil, Switzerland.  About interviewing in Google Hangouts, the scammer says “I would like to apprise you of this approach if this interview conducting method is different to you. We believe the world is always advancing so it is important to stay on top of things since change is inevitable.” He also says “training is going to be done through Seminars online (Webinars) on your PC and phone.”
        • Text message came to candidate (victim) from someone claiming to be Alexander Emerson, a Recruiter at Novartis Pharmaceuticals, using 704-565-7479. Says he found the candidates resume on SnagAJob.com.
        • Interview in Google Hangouts was with someone identified as Roy Schonberg, <RoySchonbert37121 “@” gmail.com> .  He gave job code MER/MIT8.
        • On July 10, 2019 “Roy Schonberg” used the email address hr.jnj17 “@” gmail.com
      76. On July 4, scammers claimed to represent IAC Group.

        • Candidate was contacted by a man claiming to be Jon Martin <iacgroup.jobs “@” gmail.com> about a possible interview for a Graphic Designer position. Mr. Martin said “After reviewing your Resume on LinkedIn, IAC Group online recruitment team has recommended you for the open position of Graphic Designer and you’re among the candidates shortlisted for an online/chat Interview with a Senior Recruiter at IAC Group.”
        • He was asked to contact Senior Recruiter Kelly Bysouth <kbysouth.iacgroup “@” gmail.com>
      77. On July 7, 2019 a TDS reader contacted us to say she had been invited by “Mrs. Daniel Monica” to interview via Google Hangouts for a job with Rose Pharmacy Limited.
        • Interview in Google Hangouts with someone identified as “Travis Gibson.”
        • The candidate told us that she was “hired” and would be getting a check for a sign on bonus and for her to get the supplies she needed to start her work. She then received the check via Fedex, along with a letter stating exactly the same thing Wanda (described at the top of this article) received except for a few name changes. “The check was for $3,150! Who sends that kinda money with a crappy letter included!?!” said the woman who contacted us.  “Travis Gibson” then kept pressuring her to deposit the check quickly and pay for the supplies she needed.
      78. A person with an email of dorcashinkson6 “@” gmail.com (Dorcas Hinkson) contacted another candidate on July 7, 2019 regarding a freelancing for AKKA Technologies. Candidate went through the interview and became suspicious when he was told that they are “building a facility in my area.” But they wanted him to start to work ASAP and be paid $37.09 per hour.  Like soooo many of these scams, the candidate was asked if he wanted to be paid “weekly or bi-weekly.”  “Dorcas Hinkson” also asked the candidate “Do you have Old parent’s or sick person would be included into your company health and other benefits?”
      79. Another candidate contacted us to say that she received an email from rolyncompanies.careers “@” gmail.com.  The person claimed to represent Rolyn Companies, Inc and hiring for a Graphic Design position.
        • Candidate was told that “This interview process is chat based online through Google Hangout. You’re to contact the Senior Recruiter Mrs Valerie Fleming on Google Hangouts (interviewsession.valeriefleming “@” gmail.com) to confirm and acknowledge the receipt of this email and to schedule your interview and confirm your availability.”
      80. On July 15, 2019, a candidate received an email after applying for a graphic designer position on Glassdoor.com with a company called Brainstorm Creative LLC. (see below) She thought it was a little strange since it was on a Saturday and a few words were misspelled in the email. (Very unprofessional.) She checked the company’s website and it seemed to be a legitimate marketing agency with a graphic designer position available. She was told she would start her interview with “Kayla Ivey” on Google Hangouts on Monday morning.
        • EMAIL CANDIDATE RECEIVED: “We at Brainstorm Creative LLC receive your Resume for the Position of Graphic Designer posted with “Glassdoor”. Brainstorm Creative LLC are
          in need of your skills. You’re among the Candidates shortlisted for an online chat Interview with Brainstorm Creative LLC Senior Recruiter/Human Resources. This interview will be coming up on Monday 15th by 09:00AM. This interview process is chat based online through Google Hangout. You’re to contact the Senior Recruiter/ HR / project Coordinator Mrs Kayla Ivey on Google Hangouts (recruiter.stormyourmarket “@” gmail.com) to confirm and acknowledge the receipt of this email and to schedule your interview and confirm your availability. The Google Hangout email again for the interview is recruiter.stormyourmarket@gmail.com” NOTICE: The email address contains the domain name for this business “stormyourmarket” but it a generic Gmail address that anyone can create!
      81. On July 31, 2019 a graphic designer contacted us to say he received an invitation to apply for the position of “Graphic Designer / Image Designer” with Pendleton Woolen Mills Inc.
        The email came from an odd domain but also contained the VERY REAL domain for this company: interview-hr “@” pendleton-usa.com.  However the REPLY-To address was listed as arhnade “@” gmail.com.
        The candidate was asked to interview in Google Hangouts with an HR person named  “Almarina Bianchi” from the Human Resources Department, Pendleton Woolen Mills Inc.O
      82. On August 6, 2019 a woman informs us that she received a text from 254-253-5515 by a woman giving her name as Selena Parker, saying they found her resume on Zillion jobs.  Ms. Parker directed her to either Google Hangouts or Skype text window to meet with the hiring manager, Mrs. Brenda Watkins.  The woman accepted Mrs. Watkins invitation on Skype and over the course of 24 hours answered 10 – 15 questions and then was offered a job as a Project Manager for Sequana Medical at $35/hr for training and $45/hr when she starts working.  The almost-victim told us she “was really worried if the job was real at this point because there was no voice interview. Also, the job description did not line up with a project manager. Then she asked me to email information to the email address of info@sequnamedical.com”  Notice that the company name is spelled wrong!  The victim continued to tell us that she was told she would get a check mailed to her to purchase a set of complete office equipment. The check arrived and was fraudulent.  With the check was this letter, supposedly from “Mr. Alex Morganson” of the “Payment Department.”  The woman was asked to contact Mr. Morganson via ACCOUNT.MANAGER “@” AOL.com.
      83. A graphic designer from the Caribbean contacted us on August 6, 2019 to say he found a job offered on Craigslist by a company that pretended to be Aramco Overseas Company. After submitting his portfolio and resume, he was contacted 5 days later by Sarah Paskiewicz info “@” aramcooverseas.biz. This domain, aramcooverseas.biz, was registered on July 27, 2019 and is not the real company domain of aramcooverseas.com!  Sarah Paskiewicz told the candidate to contact Alan Soffer on Google Hangouts through email alansoffer12 “@” gmail.com to schedule his interview and confirm availability. After getting “hired” he was told that they would send him a check to pay for the delivery of office equipment including:
        Apple Mac Book Pro Laptop .       File Cabinets
        Copiers                                               File Folders
        Card Filing Systems                        Graphics generator and software
        Inks and Ribbons                             Surge protectors and more….

Read about more Job Hiring Scams in our newest feature article here!