The scammers are back on the robocall circuit, and according to the Federal Trade Commission, 2.8 million people lost an estimated $5.2 billion dollars to conmen in 2021 alone.
Among the top ten schemes on the FTC hit list is the bogus job offer, a pitch that usually comes out of nowhere but sounds too good to pass up.
“They promise a job, be your own boss, set your own schedule,” FTC spokesperson Ronda Perkins said. “But really they want consumers’ personal information and their money.”
Perkins told News 6 victims have experienced a new strategy designed to fool job hunters, a so-called multi-channel approach that includes email, text, social media and robocalls.
Alex Quilici, CEO and founder of California-based YouMail, told News 6 the robocalls are produced by computers or voice actors with a pitch that sounds like a legitimate job offer.
“A lot of these guys are just looking at what legitimate employers are doing,” Quilici said. “What does Starbucks do to recruit? What does Amazon do to recruit?”
Quilici told News 6 his research team has gathered data that points to random calls produced by the millions every month.
While the level of robocalls has dropped significantly since the pandemic, Quilici said the calls appear to be more targeted.
“They’re looking at ways to make fewer calls but be just as effective,” Quilici said. “A fake job offer is a great way to steal every single piece of important information someone has.”
What is missing in many of these calls is the name of a company, a contact number and the name of the person calling you.
According to the FTC, the endgame is never to recruit a good employee. It is all about stealing your money.
The ploy of choice is counterfeit checks, usually delivered under the pretense that you are supposed to purchase office equipment. The checks are never legitimate and the thieves gain access to your bank account from the deposit information.
Quilici told News 6 he is putting his data to work to stop the people behind the robocall con games.
He has started to provide law enforcement full access to the data supplied by YouMail’s 10 million customers.
“That data is going into a database that law enforcement has access to and can use to subpoena (phone) carriers that may have been used in making those calls, help(ing) find the customer and even (using) the data to prosecute.”
If you see or lose money to a job scam, report it to the FTC at ReportFraud.ftc.gov.