Check Scams, Debt Collection scams and other financial scams.
#5409 by Checkerspot Sat Oct 25, 2008 11:58 pm
I work with a tiny independent multimedia company serving the Deaf community. One of the services we offer (one that generates modest but needed revenue) is an online job-announcement site. Last May, we received an E-mail from Global Credential Evaluators, POB 9203, College Station, TX 77842-9203, sent from this E-mail address:

incorporation<sixxxmysteryshoppers>

The text included the post (advertising a part-time Mystery Shopper position, no experience required), and an AmEx card number for the $15.00 posting fee. Although I felt that the address and text looked a tad suspicious, our financial staffer proceeded to charge the $15.00 one-month posting fee and posted the announcement. A few weeks later, we received a penalty notice from our credit-card company. The AmEx-card number sent to us was described as being stolen. We immediately removed the posting from our job board. My company was charged a stolen-card penalty, and we had no way of recovering it, since "Global Credential Evaluators" was using a fake address. The whole thing was a scam.

I wanted to contact the credit bureaus (Experian, TransUnion, and Equifax) to file a fraud claim, but my boss didn't want to send sensitive data online (although they probably already have his SSN and lots of other data).

Can anyone advise me?
Last edited by Checkerspot on Sun Oct 26, 2008 1:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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#5410 by Julia Sun Oct 26, 2008 2:03 am
Hi Checkerspot and welcome.

Unfortunately nothing much can be done as the scammers probably used a stolen credit card for payment. It's really disgusting that you the victim would be charged a penalty for this. The best thing to do in future is to first verify the card, prior to allowing the ad to stand.
I'll see what we can find regarding the site.

Are you sure that it was the actual company and not a scammer using the site as the company appears to have been around since 1996. ?

this is what I found on the site:

Administrative Contact:
Ringer, Michael [email protected]
PO Box 761
Cedar Park, Texas 78630
United States
512-528-0908
#5417 by Checkerspot Sun Oct 26, 2008 1:05 pm
Glad to see the quick response—and thank you, Julie. This site is a terrific resource. Only one problem: I've been having trouble with the post-editing mode. It's not working for me. I wanted to correct "car" to "card" in the header and to add the "gmail" suffix to the "Mystery Shopper" E-mail address on my post, but got no results. I sent a E-mail to the administrators (two, actually), but the post is still uncorrected.

o reply to your question: Note that Global Credit Evaluators (the "legit" firm you noted in your response) has its own E-mail suffix. The address posted by our scammer has a gmail suffix. Isn't this is dead giveaway for a scam? Why would a legitimate company offer a job and tell them to respond to a gmail address and not one that's under their own server?

Also, if I do submit a fraud-victim report to the credit bureaus, will they refund our penalty? Is there any point to taking this action?

I can post the complete text of the E-mail, but put the name given to us (the guy whose card was evidently stolen ) and AmEx code in xxxes, if that will help.

Even if we're not able to recover the penalty money, I want your readers to know about this. My company gets spam like everyone else, and we're aware of the many scams in circulation. One of our friends recently received a "Secret Shopper" invitation in the mail, complete with a generous "advance" check. My fellow staffers gave the check and cover letter to me for my objective opinion. Gads, it looked so tempting! But I noted that the letterhead for "Mills Employment Agency" (a nonexistent company, of course) had a small logo showing a herculean figure standing on a silhouette of Africa. That alone was a tip-off. And I told our friend that no legitimate company would send a check to someone sight unseen. We agreed that it was a scam. I suggested she show the mailing to her bank. But would it be better for her to take it to the USPS, if she still has it?

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