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Rip-Off Alert: Job seekers lured into reshipping fraud

Reported by: Marie Mortera
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Updated: 5/20/2013 6:27 pm
LAS VEGAS (KSNV -- In this Rip-Off Alert, a new scheme targets people who want to work from home is growing in popularity.

It is called reshipping fraud, and getting involved could truly cost you.

"Most of the victims are thinking they are doing it as a "work at home" job and have no idea they are tied to any scam whatsoever,” said U.S. Postal Inspector Stephanie Harden.

That's what the criminals want you to think. They market these jobs to people trying to find work, usually on the Internet.

"Receive packages at their home, re-wrap them and send them usually overseas," Harden said.

Postal inspectors say a large percentage of these scams originate in eastern Europe and Nigeria.

The goods include computers, cameras and other electronics usually bought with stolen credit cards.

The person who thought they were just making extra money working from home becomes part of a crime and can even be arrested.

"Credit card companies will contact local (police department) and say there is an address in your county receiving stolen property because the credit cards are no good," Harden said.

Postal inspectors offer these tips:
  • Don't give your personal information to a person or company you don't know.
  • Be suspicious of any offer that does not pay a regular salary or involves working for an overseas company.
  • Check out the company with the better business bureau or state attorney general.
  • Ask this question: “ ‘Why am I the middle man?’ " Harden said. “There is no reason why a merchant can't send things to customers directly."
If you believe you are a victim of one of a reshipping scam, you can file a complaint with postal inspectors online.
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