Scammers sending out bogus job offers

Cyber scammers do not hesitate using every scrap of information there is on the Internet in order to gain users’ trust and misuse it for their malicious purposes. Also, they do not have any qualms about targeting those people who may be down on their luck.

Compliance professional Edwin Etadafe, keen of warning others about the dangers of sharing their CV on online job boards, shared an email that bypassed his email spam filters and landed directly into his inbox:

We are glad to inform you that after examining your resume we came to the conclusion that you are qualified much for this position: ‘Financial Assistant’.

Financial Assistant takes part in Commercial interactions between potential customers and our company. The job is related to remote internet operations. Every payment order will be accompanied by detailed instructions.

It is also the duty to interact and report all the details of every action you take to our manager. The brief training course is enclosed. To be successful in this role you will need to be an energetic and flexible person with strong computing skills.

Your main duties will be to communicate with clients over the telephone or through the Internet, to conduct the reports, to fulfill our tasks following our instructions, to work with business forms on your own, to conclude agreements with our potential clients, to receive payments from potential customers. You will be able to get new information from our ‘Project Manager’, contact your head office and to check the report on the earnings, You will get monthly salary for your work; your salary will be divided into two parts and bonuses from each transaction depending on the amount of the deal.

The sender goes on to tell him that in order to start working, he has to download the attached contract, fill out the required fields in it and send it to a UK fax number.

“The e-mail was offering a contract job position for 6 to 12 months with a well-know investment bank,” says Etadafe. “My initial thoughts were ones of skepticism, as I had not submitted a formal application to the named organization, nor had I had any dealing with them over the telephone or in person. The e-mail also came with an attachment asking for personal details of where I lived and bank details.”

Setting aside the fact that the text contains many grammatical mistakes, the mere fact that the sender asks the recipient to share his personal and some of his financial information via email and without having contacted him by phone first and confirmed that he has gotten the job must raise some suspicion, and it obviously did.

In this particular case, I believe the scammers were looking for money mules, but similar emails can be used for a variety of purposes such as carrying malware of phishing forms in the attachment.

Recognizing the offer for what it was, Etadafe informed the financial institution the scammers were impersonating about the email, as well as Action Fraud, UK’s national fraud reporting centre.

He also points out that things like the lack of direct contact information in the email should make anyone suspicious, and that when posting CVs online users should avoid sharing sensitive information.

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