School Sponsorship Scam

How the scam works:

As more and more skilled people nowadays look for jobs online, this scam is making its rounds specifically this time of the year. It is targeted at sales people with a background in customer service or advertising. If you are one of them, watch out!

Scammers advertise themselves as an advertising group making calendars or promotions for schools or universities in your city (think of the main ones in your local area). They might even give themselves pompous names such as Varsity Group, or anything related to education.

They approach jobless people who posted their resumes on websites such as Monster or Workopolis, and offer them a job as a sales representative. Their task is to find companies that would sponsor, say, the schools’ football or basketball teams annual calendar, or would like to benefit from various advertising positions in the school’s magazine or on the game day posters.

What the scammers also ask the victims is not to contact the schools, but to operate only through the ‘main office’. Most likely, this is not even located in the city and is just the scammers’ central location – where they only use a cell phone to coordinate the victims. Needless to say, once the victims find a sponsor, a perfect crafted pitch redirects the money to an unknown untraceable account.

How to avoid:

Don’t just take any job online for the promise of making $70,000/year plus bonuses. What sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Work with a company that has a local legitimate office, reputable reviews, and is very searchable online. Run away if you cannot find anything about the company who wants to hire you on the Internet.

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