A Cry for Help
After reading the popular Gift Card Girlfriend post, "7 Gift Card SCAMS to SPOT and Easily AVOID,"
a woman reached out to Shelley Hunter for help.
Concerned that she might be involved in a scam, the woman sent screenshots of text messages between herself and a new "employer."
Shelley readily saw that the woman had been duped.
Can you spot the red flags?
The victim posted her resume on a popular job search website. A scammer texted the victim directly and explained that he needed a nanny but could not afford to hire her through the nanny service she had signed up for.
He offered good wages, an immediate start date and extra pay if she could help the family set up their new apartment.
What could go wrong?
Red Flag #1
Scammer contacts you
Scammers often initiate contact and move conversations from reputable websites or services to private text messages.
Red Flag #2
Scammer lives out of the area
Scammers often say that they live out of the state (or the country) to explain why they need help running errands such as depositing checks and buying gift cards.
Red Flag #3
Scammer pays more than expected
Scammers often send stolen or counterfeit checks written for more than promised with instructions to cash the checks quickly.
Red Flag #5
Scammer wants the gift card numbers
Once the scammer has the gift card numbers, the card balances will be immediately depleted.
Red Flag #6
Scammer tells you to HURRY
Scammers want the gift card numbers quickly so they can launder as much money as possible before the fraudulent checks are discovered or their victims get suspicious.
Red Flag #7
Scammer is persistent
Scammers use fake pictures, emotional pleas and false personal details to gain trust. Many use scare tactics too. Their stories often involve family members in crisis.
Scammers are relentless and convincing.
Think you're a
victim of a scam?
Contact the Federal Trade Commission:
Contacted by a scammer?
One last thing.