Recently a friend of mine was targeted by this scam, luckily for him he didn’t go through with it however other people have done so and been left out-of-pocket and in a lot of bother, save yourself that hassle and always be alert of when things seem strange or too good to be true.
What is the scam?
The scam is based around getting the victim to sign up for a phone contract in their name for the latest and most expensive smartphones that are on the market. The scammer will entice you in by giving you money to pay in your bank to pay for the initial costs of the contract, they will then promise a reward of money once you have the phone and have given it to them and the future prospects of earning more with the scammer (highly unlikely).
How will it affect me?
Firstly you are signing up for a contract in your name using your credit or debit card, you are then going to give this phone over to some stranger who has promised you money for doing this. Stop for a minute and think, you’ve signed up for the contract and are locked into paying monthly for this phone that you no longer have in your possession, the scammer could then go ahead and sell the phone on or even use it himself, but you will be out-of-pocket each month for the monthly cost of the contract and even on overcharges that may occur on the phone. You’ve got no control over this as everything is in your name and the person you gave the phone to has now disappeared and you’re left paying for a phone you never wanted and you’ve not earnt no money but only lost it.
What can I do about it?
Simply don’t fool for it. They may promise you the world by telling you they will give you the monthly amount each month for the phone plus £50 each month you do it for them and setup several other contracts for the prospects of earning some extra cash. Even if they have websites, leaflets or testimonials to prove how real and legit this may be, still don’t fool for it, this is reselling of a contract phone to other people, which is first voiding your contract with whoever you bought the phone from. In my friends example he saw a Facebook post advertising the job, he commented on the post showing his interest and was then contacted by the poster, they then chatted for a while to explain how things work and a hell of a lot of talk about how great this is and how real this is and how much money you can make. He then asked for a job interview to make it seem even more real, but then my friend was asked to meet in a public place and at no office, he was then pressured into putting money into his bank and then going ahead to the nearest phone store to get the phone (luckily he explained to the cashier at the phone shop why he was doing this and he came to sense to what he was actually doing and went and reported it to the police). Look at some key signs this is not legit:
- Meeting in a public place for a job interview
- Signing up for a contract in your name for someone else
- Lots of talk about how you can make lots of money
- Pressure tactics to force you out of your comfort zone and to not think twice about what you are doing
- Contacting you through Facebook as your initial communication
- The person rang you several times and was constantly checking you was doing as you was told
This may seem really obvious that this is a scam but for some people it’s not, if you are desperate for money or young this may seem like a fantastic opportunity to make a bit of money.