The Truth vs. The Scam:
Work at home processing or reshipping checks, money orders, envelopes, and/or merchandise; receiving money wired into your account; writing checks on somebody else's account; secret shopper jobs; forwarding cash received in a package, by mail, by Western Union or MoneyGram; and receiving credit cards or gift cards from a foreign employer or someone you met online.
This page: Forwarding payments • Money wired into your account • Re-wiring money received by Western Union or MoneyGram.
Please take your time; read through the material carefully.
Basics of the scam • Forwarding package and/or payments • Money wired into your account • Re-wiring Western Union or MoneyGram payments • Writing checks • Forwarding loose checks and sealed envelopes • Secret Shopper jobs • Forwarding cash received by mail or package • Receiving credit cards or gift cards
Forwarding packages and/or payments
Forwarding packages: To be a forwarding agent or reshipper you must be bonded, insured and licensed to do so within the laws of your country, state, and county. If you have been asked through email or chat room correspondence or by telephone to reship merchandise to another country that was purchased in your country, you can bet that the merchandise was purchased with stolen credit cards. You are facilitating a crime, receiving and reshipping stolen property, and are at risk of arrest and conviction.
When the scamployer asks you to spend your own money on shipping costs, don't think for a minute that you will be reimbursed.
When the scamployer provides a carrier account number, such as a FedEx account number, to cover mailing costs, the account number is one that has either been hijacked from a legitimate company (usually a large corporation) or one that has been paid for with stolen credit card information.
Scammers never spend their own money if they can help it, and they certainly never spend their own money on any of their victims.
Forwarding payments: As a private individual, you cannot, cannot, cannot accept payments made to you personally that are in payment for products and services provided by another.
Unless you are a legally registered, licensed, and bonded payment processing company, you can ONLY accept money designated for another if you are depositing the money into a bank account in the company or individual's name for whom the funds are intended and whose signature cards are signed by that account holder. Only the account holder may remove funds from that account, not you.
Payment processing companies exist all over the world. They accept money for credit card payments and money for products. When making an online purchase or setting up a scheduled credit card payment, it is not unusual to receive an email notice that your credit card statement will list the deduction as a payment to XYZ company when you purchased a product from ABC company. However, those companies operate under the laws of their state and country, have strict internal controls, and understand the rules of compliance.
Money wired into your account
Any bank anywhere in the world can wire money to any other bank in another part of the world with no problem. Money wired bank-to-bank is the same as cash.
Any money you receive by wire into your bank account or credit card account that pertains to your "job" has been stolen from another account holder whose bank account has been invaded by hackers or whose credit card information has been stolen either by hackers or by credit card thieves on the street.
When the scamployer ask you to open an account at a specific bank, you can be certain that whatever funds you receive were illegally obtained from another account at the same bank.
Re-wiring money received by Western Union or MoneyGram
You have to ask yourself: why would anyone need to have money re-wired that's already in a wire transfer system?
No legitimate employer would ever ask an employee to wait for money to arrive at a Western Union or MoneyGram office and immediately wire it back out to an individual.
You see, Western Union and MoneyGram are designed to be used to send money between private individuals, not companies. There's no proper tracking when funds are transferred in this way, no proper money trail in the corporate sense, and no accountability. Once the money has been picked up at the other end it disappears into thin air.
A company can open a Western Union or MoneyGram account specifically to receive payments to that company - lending companies do this all the time; however, in that instance one is wiring the money to a corporation and a specific account number is supplied for the purpose.
If you have been hired to re-wire money with no accountability and have sent off the money, you are engaged in theft and money laundering and are at risk of arrest, conviction, and jail.