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Is this a scam?
Thread poster: Gabriele Demuth

Gabriele Demuth  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 23:31
Member (2014)
English to German
Aug 4, 2015

I received the following e-mail today, after a short reply to a rather vague inquiry:


Dear Applicant,

Your email was received from the PROZ advert you applied to.

My wife and I are relocating to (my town).
We currently need the services of someone to act as our Personal assistant prior to our arrival.

My wife is a translator hence the reason for choosing from a translators portal.

We are scheduled to arrive Norwich in three weeks.

The duties as our personal assistant would be to assist us in basically anything we are required to do prior to our arrival which may range from.

Planning trips,Arranging Airport Pickups,Pay bills,Booking train tickets,Vehicle Hire,Vehicle Insurance,Booking Hotels & General assistant.

We are offering Five Hundred Pounds per week.
This job could be part-time or full-time because most of the task will be done at your spare time .

Full itinerary would be given to you as soon as all arrangements have been concluded.


If more information is required, please contact me and i will be glad to respond almost immediately.


This email does not automatically offer you the job.
Only successful candidates will be contacted.

If you are interested, kindly respond with your contact details.

No prior experience in this field is necessary.


This is from an Alex Tilba with an IP address from the states. It just sounds a bit too good to be true - I wouldn't be surprised if they then asked to lay out some money to pay bills with a promise of refund!


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Tony M  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 00:31
Member
French to English
+ ...
SCAM! Aug 4, 2015

I'd say it's pretty definitely a scam — we had soemthing like this just the other day, with almost identical wording.

I'd bin it and cut all contact with them.


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Matthias Brombach  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 00:31
Member (2007)
English to German
+ ...
Lure them (him / her) to find out Aug 4, 2015

Gabriele Demuth wrote:

I wouldn't be surprised if they then asked to lay out some money to pay bills with a promise of refund!


Lure them with asking for upfront payment of an extraordinary higher sum (i.e. as deposit). When the person is willing to do so without hesitation, it might be the money laundry scam. I recently was asked by an unprofessionally appearing gmail sender (of cource gmail...) for interpreting services (which I do not offer on my profile) in the south of Germany, whereas I live in the (almost) utmost north. All expenses will be covered in upfront payment, of course. Naming 3000 € was no problem at all. Person refused to name the locations and the subjects to interprete (i.e. medical, business, financial etc.). Contact was finally aborted.


[Edited at 2015-08-04 15:55 GMT]


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Paulinho Fonseca  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 20:31
Member (2011)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
That was my first thought when reading your post. LOL Aug 4, 2015

"I wouldn't be surprised if they then asked to lay out some money to pay bills with a promise of refund!"


Careful!





Gabriele Demuth wrote:

I received the following e-mail today, after a short reply to a rather vague inquiry:


Dear Applicant,

Your email was received from the PROZ advert you applied to.

My wife and I are relocating to (my town).
We currently need the services of someone to act as our Personal assistant prior to our arrival.

My wife is a translator hence the reason for choosing from a translators portal.

We are scheduled to arrive Norwich in three weeks.

The duties as our personal assistant would be to assist us in basically anything we are required to do prior to our arrival which may range from.

Planning trips,Arranging Airport Pickups,Pay bills,Booking train tickets,Vehicle Hire,Vehicle Insurance,Booking Hotels & General assistant.

We are offering Five Hundred Pounds per week.
This job could be part-time or full-time because most of the task will be done at your spare time .

Full itinerary would be given to you as soon as all arrangements have been concluded.


If more information is required, please contact me and i will be glad to respond almost immediately.


This email does not automatically offer you the job.
Only successful candidates will be contacted.

If you are interested, kindly respond with your contact details.

No prior experience in this field is necessary.


This is from an Alex Tilba with an IP address from the states. It just sounds a bit too good to be true - I wouldn't be surprised if they then asked to lay out some money to pay bills with a promise of refund!


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Thomas T. Frost  Identity Verified
Member (2014)
French to Danish
+ ...
Probably a scam Aug 4, 2015

The writer of this, if a scammer, seems to have been careful to avoid the classic hallmarks of a scam.

But since the person can write English, why does he contact a translator and not a relocation company?

He offers £500 per week. Normally, you ask what the services you require will cost. I've worked in relocation and never once met a client who told me what my charges would be, just as I don't tell a doctor or a solicitor what to charge.

Most probably a scam. If it isn't, it's someone who's really awkward. If you were to accept, he'd probably want to send you an advance payment for one or two weeks by falsified cheque, then cancel a few days later, before the cheque has bounced, and ask for a refund by Western Union.

A variant is to pay via Paypal with a stolen credit card instead of by cheque.


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Gabriele Demuth  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 23:31
Member (2014)
English to German
TOPIC STARTER
Quite personalised, but Aug 4, 2015

the request doesn't make sense.

They used my home town and this request can easily be changed to be posted on different portals.

And no experience necessary! That is just an invitation for everyone to apply.


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Andrea Muller  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 23:31
English to German
+ ...
Sound like an overpayment scam Aug 4, 2015

I agree with Thomas, this sound like an overpayment scam with advance payment by cheque followed by cancellation of the trip.

And 500 per week seems a popular salary for personal assistants. https://scaminvestigatorblog.wordpress.com/tag/personal-assistant/


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Enrique Cavalitto
Local time: 20:31
SITE STAFF
A classic advance payment scam Aug 4, 2015

This is a classic example of an advance payment scam.

A very useful resource is the scam alert center, where members can subscribe to receive notifications when new scams are reported.

In case of doubt, ask for verifiable contact information and then verify it. This will send scammers away. Don't try to play along, never try to "cheat the cheaters". Simply drop the issue and eventually help alert others.

Regards,
Enrique


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RichardP  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 23:31
Member (2014)
French to English
+ ...
I got the same email Aug 5, 2015

Change Norwich to York and I got the same email

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Sabine Braun  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 23:31
Member (2006)
English to German
+ ...
Got the same... Aug 5, 2015

in Cardiff... Not very convincing, is it!?

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Gabriele Demuth  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 23:31
Member (2014)
English to German
TOPIC STARTER
Do you still have the original mail? Aug 5, 2015

Karen from Proz asked me to forward her the original mail (with all the details) they sent via Proz, unfortunately I have already deleted it and its not in the Trash either.

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Sabine Braun  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 23:31
Member (2006)
English to German
+ ...
I have still got it.... Aug 5, 2015

Just let me know who I need to send it to.

Sabine


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Gabriele Demuth  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 23:31
Member (2014)
English to German
TOPIC STARTER
Sabine Aug 5, 2015

Here is the info:
Thanks!

-----------
You have been sent a message via ProZ.com.
Author: Karen Zaragoza (ProZ.com Member)
Author's Profile: http://www.proz.com/profile/1445299
Author's IP address: 180.190.90.233
-----------

Dear Gabriele,

I am contacting you regarding your forum post in,
http://www.proz.com/post/2455045#2455045 . To look into this

further, could you please tell me if you received the email
via ProZ.com? Could you please provide me with the complete

message, including the full headers of the email you
received?

To view the complete headers of an email message, follow the
instructions for your email client on this page:

http://mail.google.com/support/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=22454


Here is an example of a complete header:

Received: from pogo.proz.com ([66.220.3.122])
by megaman.proz.com with esmtp (Exim 3.35 #1
(Debian))
id 1CFvpY-00050F-00
for ; Fri, 08 Oct 2004 14:34:48 +0000
Received: from mail by pogo.proz.com with local (Exim 3.35
#1 (Debian))
id 1CFvpH-0002AS-00
for ; Fri, 08 Oct 2004 14:34:31 +0000


Please re-open this support request once you have the
required information.

Thanks in advance.


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Sabine Braun  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 23:31
Member (2006)
English to German
+ ...
Thanks Aug 5, 2015

will pass it on.

Sabine


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Thayenga  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 00:31
Member (2009)
English to German
+ ...
The treat of a scammer Aug 5, 2015

Gabriele Demuth wrote:

the request doesn't make sense.

They used my home town and this request can easily be changed to be posted on different portals.

And no experience necessary! That is just an invitation for everyone to apply.


Well, anyone can apply, but...only the successful candidate will receive the doubtful "honor" to pay their bills...out of his/her own pocket to then never hear anything from them again.

As Thomas has asked, why doesn't he hire a real relocation company? Maybe because he would then have to pay them?

A few hours ago I received the same email and... now he's intending to relocate to my home town... which is not in the UK. He must be a millionaire to be able to relocate to how ever many countries.


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