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Frauds galore in the name of Work From Home

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Work From Home Frauds :

  • The sunken job market due to COVID19 has resulted in aspirants innocently seeking alternative employment opportunities on fake job websites and work from home companies that rob them off their money. In India, nearly 30% percent of teens who are actively on the internet have been victims of ‘social engineering’ scams. Work From Home scam is scam where the people are fooled into paying to help them start a business, only for nothing to materialise, or users are tricked into completing work, but never receive any payment for the work.
  • Scammers have also phished many house wives and students along with un-employed who want to do the part time job. Victims are prompted to pay a processing fee in order to gain large sums of money and the scammers pretending to be officials from law and enforcement collect the money by the way of social engineering them for the errors they have made during the work from home tasks.

Few Factors why people fall to such online frauds and lose money :

  • Trust: Usually the scammers exploit the trust that impulse is the basis of social engineering.
  • Ignorance: Lack of knowledge about social engineering attacks makes people and organisation’s vulnerable, pretending they are in a position of authority (like executive or manager of any bank or company or a law enforcement agency).
  • Greed: Scammers promise rewards in exchange for your time spent on simple tasks like typing, filling forms, and social media likings (a very easy way to earn money), Many victims pay hefty advances & security deposits before they even receive the money for the proposed tasks.
  • Fear: People are afraid of loss, and fraudsters exploit people’s fears. For example, they might send a message or make a call warning about the errors you have done during the data entry job assigned to the victim.
  • Urgency & Panic: A scammers might call in the guise of a lawyer or police officer who requires an urgent transfer of funds because of the errors made during the work from home jobs, they usually pay off the money to avoid legal actions against them.

Modus Operandi :

  • Step 1: They get (Phishing) messages on WhatsApp, SMS, Emails and fake websites seeking members for doing their D.T.P. Jobs like Typing News and Resume Filling Etc.
  • Step 2: Victims click the link and fill the form or call the number displayed, they do an interview on WhatsApp just like any corporate interview.
  • Step 3: Victims receive a formal communication of acceptance/selection via Email, WhatsApp, or SMS.
  • Step 4: Victims are requested to submit the all proofs Address, Pan Card and Aadhaar Card.
  • Step 5: After submission of documents they will ask to sign in online PDF forms which have all the Terms and Conditions, by default they will have a penalty clause for errors/quality of the submitted work.
  • Step 6: They will send the Portal ID and Password for submissions of work
  • Step 7: In the Majority of the cases they will ask for a Security Deposit before the work starts and this will depend on the desperateness of the Victims, ranging from 10000/- to 100000/-.
  • Step 8: First few days usually the submitted work will not identify any errors showing 90% accuracy and if required they will pay minor amounts to impress the Victims
  • Step 9: Subsequently they will start identifying mistakes (i.e. Generally it’s around 90% Accuracy Required) and Scammers Consolidate the errors and produce a refundable bill.
  • Step 10: Now the harassment and extortion starts
    • (a) They make hundreds of calls from different numbers in a single day.
    • (b) Get calls from people claiming to lawyers and police claiming to take legal action by sending fake FIR’s and fake legal notice’s.
    • (c) Terrified Victims usually pay the ransom.
  • Also Note: Based on the few victims communication with our End Now Foundation Volunteers, many victims have paid registration charges up to one lakhs rupees, We have also seen situations where victims have also mentioned non availability of laptops with them and the scammers have requested to pay additional 10000/- towards insurance for laptops and another 5000/- towards transportation charges. Subsequently an ID Card and offer letter are sent but not the laptop. Upon repeated requests and call, they have requested to pay cancellation fee of 5000/- for the rest of the money to be refunded and post this none of the calls or emails are acknowledged.

Share these Tips to be Safe from Work from Home Frauds :

  • Be wary of short URLs and information requested on google forms from unknown sources
  • Never send sensitive, personal, or proprietary information (Aadhar or Pan card) via email, regardless of who is asking for it.
  • You will notice poor spelling and grammar throughout the email, SMS and portals.
  • Links / Forms asking for personal information (Passwords & Bank Information).
  • Always check the header of the email for genuineness of its content.
  • Never sign any online agreement unless and until you have take an opinion from a lawyer.
  • Never pay advances towards getting any job or work, genuine company doesn’t ask for any deposits.
  • Scanning QR Code or giving OTP, UPIN, Bank Card, and CVV number’s, Means you are transferring the money from your account and NOT receiving.
  • Report the fraud on immediately with all communications made with the scammer.