Online scams may offer employment or ask you to do certain tasks
as bait in order to steal money or your identity.
The first message may seem legitimate, but follow-up emails tend
to include a variety of red flags.
By falling for an online scam, you could unknowingly break the
law. Your actions may include money laundering or credit card
These messages continue to evolve.
- Order placement: You place orders
- Check printing: Someone asks you to print checks and overnight
- Check cashing - You are depositing checks
- Wiring money: You are transferring money to other accounts
- Gift cards: You are asked to purchase gift cards
- Bitcoin: You are asked to convert cash into bitcoin
- Bank accounts: You are using your bank account or opening up
- Shipping items: You are asked to reship items.
- Mystery shopping: You are asked to purchase items and ship them
to another address
If the job seems too good to be true, it is likely is a
scam. A good question to ask is: Why would someone pay me
this much to do something they could do themselves?
- Verify the offer by contacting the company directly
- Look up the company on the Internet, do not use the number in
- Look for a Human Resources contact and call them to ask if this
is a legitimate employment offer*
* You may be able to turn this into a positive. Tell them
that you researched the company and are interested in working for
them. Ask the HR person how you can apply for a position.
If you think you fell for a scam, protect yourself by stopping
any further communication.
- Change any passwords on accounts that were involved in the
- Contact any financial institutions involved
- Make a report to your local law enforcement. If you are a
member of the University at Buffalo, please contact University
- File a complaint at the Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3)
The criminal may threaten you or use your identity for another