How the scam works:
If you are an instructor of any kind (music teacher, math tutor, fitness instructor, even child care operator, etc) you might come across this scam.
Advertising your services in the newspapers or online, a client calls you; introducing himself as a parent who is sending his child on vacation to your city. He wants his child to take lessons/sessions while visiting as there is an exam, contest, or a school concert coming up, or something similar. You agree on a price and he says he’ll send a check in advance. The scam has two variations.
Scenario 1. The check “mistakenly” has an amount much bigger then you negotiated (eg. $3,000 instead $300). In this case, you phone him up and he tells you not to worry, just put the check in your account, keep the fee and send him the difference.
Scenario 2. The day after you have received the check and deposited it in your account, the scammer calls you to tell you that the child can’t come on vacation after all for some reason (got sick or in an accident) so the deal is off. In this case, he tells you he’s sorry to have taken your time and suggests you keep 10% and refund him the rest.
Of course, there is no child who will show up to your door, even in the first case. If you deposit the check and send the cash to the scammer right away, you will be in big trouble with your bank. The check will bounce in a few business days and you will be in debt for thousands of dollars. Just rip up the check and move on.
Lately, this scam has been targeting childcare operators, so if you run a dayhome beware of emails from a man claiming to be moving to your town from Mexico (or, really, any other country).
How to avoid:
This is right up there with other scams where you are asked to put large checks into your account and send someone a refund. Nobody in their right senses, except scammers, will ask you to put large checks into your account. Be suspicious right away.
In the meantime, if you are really looking for a job and seek to make some money until you find the next ideal job, maybe try Swagbucks.com, which is the world’s largest free online rewards program. You get paid by doing things online which you might do anyway, such as searching the web, discover products, take surveys, watch videos, or play games. You can also get free iTunes and Amazon cards. The company also has an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau. You can register for free HERE.
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