How the scam works:
vWorker (formerly known as Rent a Coder) is a great online job site where contractors can post their profiles and resumes and clients can post jobs they need completed in IT, design, administration or writing categories. The contractors then bid on the posted jobs and the client hires the most qualified candidate with the most reasonable bid.
These sites have enabled many people to begin working from home. But, as with everything else online, there are often scammers waiting to take advantage of the anonymity the web provides and the payment factor on sites such as vWorker.
In this recent scam vWorker contractors have been receiving phishing emails that claim to be from vWorker. The email states that vWorker is placing a hold on the contractor’s funds as a money laundering investigation involving the contractor takes place. The email advises that the investigation can take a minimum of 30 days. A recent email was received by an employee, and it reads as follows:
To: Subject: INVESTIGATION PENDING
Date: Thu, 18 Oct 2012 15:59:17 -0400
Due to the suspicious and inconsistent nature of the income being processed, we’ve placed a hold on your account until verifications can be made regarding your employment. As of now, your funds will still accumulate but will not be dispersed until an investigation can be completed and you’re cleared of any money laundering charges. The investigation could take a minimum of 30 days, and we apologize for any inconvenience this may cause you. Respond with any questions via email or my number below.
Jerry Hines, Investigations
How to avoid:
vWorker has stated that the communications are not coming from them, as the live.com domain name can attest. Legitimate vWorker communications will have the domain name vWorker.com or Exhedra.com. If you receive one of these emails, do not respond directly to the sender. Instead, please forward the email directly to vWorker support so that they can investigate the scam further. vWorker surmises that the phishing scammers are trying to obtain contractors’ login and personal identification information.
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