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Fake checks: The nanny or caregiver scam

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Do you offer your professional services as a babysitter, nanny, or other kind of caregiver? You may have used websites that can match you up with potential clients – sites like Care.com or Sittercity.com. These sites can be a convenient and efficient way to drum up business. But scammers may misuse these sites. FTC staff has seen complaints about con artists cheating caregivers with a counterfeit check scheme that asks you to send payment to a third party. Details may vary, but, in general, the scam works like this:

Someone replies to your listing on the site, saying they want to hire you to care for their child, parent, or even a pet. They often say they live out of state and are moving to your area soon. They may ask you – with a very persuasive story that tugs at your heartstrings – to accept delivery of special items or medical equipment their loved one will need while in your care. They send you a check to deposit and ask you to keep some money as payment for your services and then transfer the rest to a third party – supposedly to pay for the goods.

What’s the problem? The check and the third party turn out to be fake. It takes only a day or two for your bank to make the money available to you, but it can take weeks for your bank to determine a check is phony. If you already withdrew that money, you’re on the hook to pay back the bank. If you’ve already transferred the money to the third party, it’s gone – like sending cash. And, since the recipient can pick up the money from a different money transfer location than the one you sent it to, it’s nearly impossible to find the recipient. That’s how these con artists avoid detection.

So how can you protect yourself? If a potential client urges you to transfer money using a service like Western Union or MoneyGram, it’s probably a scam. Don’t send money to someone you don’t know, either in cash or through a money transfer service. Likewise, don’t deposit a check from someone you don’t know and then transfer the money. No matter how convincing the story, it’s a lie. And, as always, don’t respond to any messages that ask for your personal or financial information, regardless of whether the message comes as an email, a phone call, a text, or an ad.

If you or someone you know was tricked into transferring money – for any reason, report it to the money transfer company:

  • MoneyGram: 1-800-666-3947 (1-800-955-7777 for Spanish) or at moneygram.com
  • Western Union: 1-800-448-1492

Then, report it to the FTC. And you may want to notify the site that’s being misused. The scammer is likely trying to prey on other caregivers looking for work.

Tagged with: fake check, jobs, scam
Blog Topics: 
Jobs & Making Money

Comments

Don't feel bad at all. They shouldn't lol keep up your awesome work :)

So i got a check from a guy and cashed it at a Casino and now I'm thinking that it might be a scammer check what should I do

It’s still true! I’m 18 years old and have babysat with care.com before so I didn’t think any of it until after I processed the check and sent money over I was on the week of my finals and wasn’t thinking clearly. I thankfully caught it on time and I’m having my account closed out and the money refunded back into my account prior to closing it. They used the same story about being hearing impaired and he has two kids and a dog name md Gary. They sent me 2500+ dollars. The names used err Paul and Stephen Hogan. Stay safe and don’t let it get out of hand.

beware of a scam using the E-mail oneartlover843@ gmail.com I was contacted on June 14 2018 by this person claiming to be Greg Garver. Of course he was sending me a check for over 30000.00 dollars of course after he wanted me to deposit the check he stated I would be paid 400.00 weekly of course this was to be paid with the check he sent. THIS IS FAKE luckily my kids were looking out for me and showed me this site. Thanks kids

I just got a text from this guy this morning. I'm not signed up for Indeed or any job search site, but I texted back Wrong Number and offered to forward his information to the FTC. He has stopped texting me. Thanks for posting the warning. It is much appreciated!

I have received some version of the same scam via Rover and email. I am including the email below so others will know this is fake.

The email I received: Hi, and thanks for your response concerning the Pet sitting ,Im a single Mother,Son’s name is Eric I attended Texas School for the Deaf where I achieved my highest qualification. I have my own business(Self Employed). I attend the catholic. We are in the process of relocating to your area. I am 37 and I am hard of hearing. I work based on the development and counseling of the deaf people in the community i would be needing your services for my dog (cookie) a Golden Retriever.starting from 19th July, Monday-Friday, 5/4hours a day or weekends ,at your convenience, he is friendly with no allergies. Your services will be: 1. Feeding 2. Taking him for a walk. 3. Wellness check 4. Playing with him Like I said we are relocating and have already made arrangement for the cookie as well, I really took my time in going through your profile on Rover and it got me rest assured that you are a very reliable pet sitter so for this reason I would love cookie to be in your care, I've also ordered for a special Kennel for him which he would be living as his house when we arrive and I want them to be ready before our arrival so everything can be in place. This could be a temporary or permanent job it depends on what your schedule is like but I do like to be sure if you are available the first two weeks. I made some research on the wages for your service and i have decided to start with $400 per week. You will be paid $400 for the first week pending on my arrival and as time goes we can negotiate on a new pay as cookie gets along with you. I want to inform you that i have a seminar to attend as soon as i arrive and will be having an interview section with you immediately after the seminar . Also I will like to include your pay to our Payroll for the period just to have you booked down and secure for my dog as his sitter. I will be needing the following information below to issue a check out to you under the supervision of my Payroll. I need your direct mobile number so I can contact you and have immediate response whenever I contact you in case I need to pass an urgent information: Name: Address: City: State: Zip Code: Phone #: I have made some arrangements with the Doghouse seller about the kennel, Dog Foods, Cream and some other necessary accessories as soon as you get the payment you will deduct $400 as your upfront payment just to have you booked and have the remaining balance of $1,500 which is for the Kennel to the Sale Representative for shipping.I hope the pets will have the best of time while they are in your care and you will treat them right just like yours. Get back to me as I have a lot of issue to put in place prior to my arrival I look forward to hearing back from you. Thank you and God bless

Has anyone from ever heard from a Carter smith.

A guy named carte Smith from la contacted my wife of a website called housekeeper.com said he was moving to our area soon with his pregnant wife and was seeking her services for a few days a week for 3hrs a day. He is sending a check. She is supposed to take out 2 weeks pay in advance and $100 for gas. The balance was to be used for appliances and groceries for the new residence he supposedly is purchasing in our are. Today he emailed wanting her to take out $900 and send to a 3rd party named Noel grigalunus. Mr Carter smith is supposedly in some type of film production. He is using the email address smithcart183@ gmail.com what do u do???? I also have his cell number. Please help us. I don't not want my wife to get into trouble!!! We are a hard working middle class family who needs the income but a scam like this could bankrupt us . We live week to week as it is. Please reply as to what I should do

This sounds like a scam. You can choose to not get involved. You can choose to return the check, or give it to the bank, and tell the person you don't want the job.  He might hassle you, because he wants money, but you don't need to get involved in a scam.

In this kind of scam, someone mails you a bad check, and they tell you to deposit it and send them (or their friend) cash right away. If you do that, and then the bank finds out the check was no good, you have to repay the bank for the money you withdrew. If you deposit a bad check and take out $900, you'll owe the bank $900.

I almost fell for this scam from Tracy Miller with the hard of hearing bit. Tried to send me 1950$ when I had not done any services yet. Then pressuring me to deposit the check immediately saying their accountant could help me if I gave him my bank username. Luckily my dad is an accountant and warned me before it was too late. BEWARE!!!

I’m a victim of one of the business’s the scammers use to duplicate checks. They were spot on faking our check identity. Luckily the people who the scammers deceived the (my) large checks Googled the business and contacted me. We’ve been texting with the scammers and going with it just to see how far they’ll take it. So far I am to pay an interior decorator and buy clothes for the foster children. I should be getting my instructions later. Which I will show to the police when I’m filing my a report. I am just here as a victim as well and just want to spread the word, if you’re getting a huge check for errands...IT IS TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE.

Just wanted to mention I got two emails from people wanting a pet sitter. The first I read sounded a little odd, so I went looking online for info on pet sitter scams and found posts people received verbatim of the same emails that had been sent to me. It was the person who said they attended some school of the deaf and had achieved his highest qualification. His email had photos of his family and also included him mentioning a horse and a photo of him with the horse. People that do this sort of thing are pathetic!

has anyone been messaged or messaged by a man named Sam L. looking for a sitter for his 2 year old son. wants me to run errands for him before comes. he is moving from canada .

brian and naiomi clark, asked for the same thing. they want my info to send me a check so i can purchase things on the day of their arrival. it’s a scam obviously so don’t message them back

I was just scammed by someone claiming to be Logan Graysham on care.com. I was sent a fraud cheque unaware that it was in fact fraudulent but I called my bank right away to check if it was valid. They told me that it was a fraud cheque and I got it taken from my account by my banks security right away thank goodness. But noe he is messaging me and telling me that he is going to get lawyers involved but I call b.s. because he definitely knows what he did. I'm sure it was an intimidation tactic. Don't trust anyone that is willing to send you large amounts of money without knowing anything about you.

Hi, I think I am being scammed but I don't know 100%. But this is the scenario. I signed up for care.com and within 3 days maybe, someone contacted me. he said that he and his family were relocated to my area. We spoke through email and then eventually text message, his name is Jackson E. White, at least that is the name he gave me. He gave me some background information about them and his family and offered to pay me and upfront my payment and if I would also be able to pay a 'Toymaker', that would deliver some toys to me upon their arrival. I have deposited the check into my account but I have not touched the money. I am scared that this may be fake and I don't want to go into debt with the bank( my family has also put doubt). I just want this to be over.. how do I deal with the money in my account without getting hurt.

Hi! The same exact thing happened to me today. I received a check from Jackson White for $3,800 and was told to forward onto a toy seller. I haven’t done anything with the check because we saw red flags immediately but I was wondering what you ended up doing/what happened with the money you deposited? Did you end up saying anything to “Jackson white”? He is texting me trying to get me to deposit the check as soon as I can. Obviously I now know this is a scam but I’m not sure how to go about it now. Thanks!

I replied to an ad for Loran and Dennis Hoffmann from Canada relocating to the states. He works for the government and needs a caregiver for his mother, who has dementia. Same thing with a $400 first week payment, and the remaining $2450 to be wired to a Kayla Baker, the store manager for household items, in Indianapolis. I deposited the check but have not done anything with it. I plan to talk to my bank on the next business day.

Yeah one that tried to get me started out like this . Though it was a different name but used AOL. Though there was a picture with the icon from LinkedIn. They said they got my info on care.com I have never been a member of care.com. At the time I was unsure but, I kept talking to this person. Until I found this article from a friend. My husband kept telling me to do it.
Hello l will like to know if you will be interested in working with my father as a caregiver M-F 9 AM to 3 PM,$20/HR? If available I look forward to your response. Kindly email me loren bucci@
Thank you

Did anyone ever talk to a Mr. James Moore? About a Personal Assistant job?!?

I got a email from James Howell shows up Karen Howell. Said he was looking for a CNA/caregiver for his father. Stated he would pay me 20 HR from 9-3 he was a welder/scuba diver he was also in Canada.That they were purchasing a home for father. I would meet realtor and father claims it is a certified bank check. That he would send extra to cover the movers. I just tell them where to put everything at. He would include grocery allowance for his dad and other money for medical needs. He did ask me a few questions that seemed like possible true of if I smoked depression ect. Would I work overtime. I asked a question if I had appointment could father come with me. He responded back but, it seemed like a script. Then he mentioned apt in script where they were supposed to be buying a home. He did ask for address and phone number full name is sent an email to him when I discovered this was total scam that I wasn't interested. He sent me a script back of his dad's likes and dislike of food and activities. So they haven't sent anything yet. I don't know how he got my email. He said under care.com

I received another one this is how it starts out. Please beware...
Hello

l will like to know if you will be interested in working with my father as a caregiver M-F 9 AM to 3 PM,$20/HR? If available I look forward to your response. Kindly email me lorenbucci@aol.com

Thank you

We were in contact with A Gregory Albert, he said he was a caretaker at a school and did this on the side. We only paid him cash, until we learned that he was stealing cash and valuables from my mother. Buyer Beware!

Hey guys... I guess it’s happening wd me now I’ve received mails similar to the above mentioned comments. Should I inform the police or just ignore the mails now.

I was just sent this email today. It's similar to what at least one other person posted just the names are different.

hanks for responding to our post inquiry regarding the Babysitting/Nanny position. My name is Katty and my daughter is Sandra , she is 2 years old and recently had a limb surgery. she's been taking little steps to walk again but still need support which is why I need someone to take care of her and help with some light chores as we are relocating. I would be needing your service from Monday through Friday which is 6-7 hours daily, from 9am - 3pm.

My daughter is a wonderful person and full of life, she is so interesting to be with. I will be needing your services for long term on and willing to offer you $25 per hour with benefits as compensation for trustworthy and honesty.

If you accept this position, I will arrange for your first week upfront payment to be sent out to you so that i can be rest assured of your availability for the job and quit the search. Let me know if you are okay with this and i hope you understand my concerns.

If this employment opportunity is acceptable by you, the information below is required for a confirmation and further proceedings to take place:

Full name:
Full Address: (Street name,State,City & Zip Code)
Apt #: (If Available)
Home phone number:
Cell phone number:
Available hours:

We would be arriving on the 12th of May but just before the date, we would have some assignments for you such as purchasing an electric wheel chair for my daughter and one other needed items in order to work with my daughter, which is very important to get before our arrival but i am the one that will pay for the wheel chair.

NOTE - She just had a surgery on her right knee and wouldn't be able to walk for for a while, this is why we need to get this wheelchair before our arrival. All we ask of you is your total honesty and sincerity.
I await your response as regards this employment offer and the requested details.

Regards

I got this exact same message but just with different names! Wow.

Just got this exact one today. Through care.com. Alisa Gary with her daughter, Sandra.

I received this exact message(but different name) last week after a craiglist application , and now he is asking some questions..
I can't believe how people take so nasty advantages.. God helps everyone.

There's a person by the name of Justin Hogan [justinnw09@ ] aggressively sending long emails to pet sitting profile holders asking them to work for him. He wrote me twice....Does this sound familiar?
Justin Hogan 10:19 AM (20 minutes ago) to me
Hello How is your day going? Thanks for your response, I am glad to read from you. I am a Father 2, Emmanuel and Sharon, they are 6 yrs, 3yrs and 8 month respectively.I attended Chicago School for the Deaf where I achieved my highest qualification. I have my own business (Self Employed). I attend the catholic. We are in the process of relocating to your area. I am 39 and I am hard of hearing.I work based on the development and counseling of the deaf people in the community, I am moving to your area in few weeks with my adorable dog and I really need a honest and responsible care for my pet. Danny he is cute and adorable he is very friendly and playful. he is also very much comfortable with other dogs and cat too he enjoys being indoors with us. Going for walks Danny is very favorite activity. he plays well with other dogs too. Danny is house trained and crate trained.... and have contacted a suppliers for the dog Cage, toys, blankets,food,bed.and other things you will care for him starting 7th of June I will appreciate if you can tell me a few things about yourself and maybe attach one or two pictures of you, below are your duties:
House Sitting,Mail/Newspaper Retrieval,Watering Plants,Pet Sitting/walking,Daily Feeding

This could be a temporary/permanent job. It depends on what your schedule looks like and also i will like you to know the hours are flexible but I do like to be sure if you are available the first month. I made some research on the wages for your service and I have decided to start with $30 per hour and as time goes we can negotiate on a new pay as my dog get along with you. I want to inform you that I have a seminar I will be attending to as soon as I arrive and will be having an interview section with you immediately I arrive with my Dog. Also I will like to include your pay to our payroll for the period just to have you booked down and secure for my Pet. I will be needing the following information below to issue out the check to you and I need your direct mobile number so I can text you in case I need to pass an urgent information:
Full Name: Address: Apt: City: State: Zip Code: Phone #:
I have made some arrangements with the dog utility suppliers, so as soon as you get the payment, you will deduct your first week pay and have the rest sent to the dog utility suppliers as soon as the check clears, I hope my Dog will have the best of time while is in your care and I hope you will treat him right just like yours. Get back to me as I have a lot of issue to put in place prior to my arrival. I look forward to hearing back from you.Thank you and God bless.

Yes I received an email from this same person. I thought it was legit. My boyfriend said it was a scam. He was right. Thank God I didn't send him any info about myself like he asked. I just replied with a email I use for jobs and such. But that's it. I'm glad I did some research.

Ohhhh Jesus.. Thank you for directing me to this site!!! This will save me from a worst situation!!!! I have been receiving email from that guy.. same wordings. My husband is right... his email is so sketchy. I have been responding to his email asking what area he is moving to and couldn't answer me straight. Today he sent me an email that the check has been email to me already. I need to email this guys to let him know I will not be one of his victim. Or I will wait for his check and send him a photo of it with a writing on it that will surprise him.

Thank GOD for your timing! You save me Lord.

Ohhhh Jesus.. Thank you for directing me to this site!!! This will save me from a worst situation!!!! I have been receiving email from that guy.. same wordings. My husband is right... his email is so sketchy. I have been responding to his email asking what area he is moving to and couldn't answer me straight. Today he sent me an email that the check has been email to me already. I need to email this guys to let him know I will not be one of his victim. Or I will wait for his check and send him a photo of it with a writing on it that will surprise him.

Thank GOD for your timing! You save me Lord.

This happened to someone I know, it had scam written all over it, but it was on indeed.com, so it seemed pretty convincing. The story is the same from wheelchair to living out of town and relocating. Thank goodness the bank caught it before any funds were transferred. It did take a few days but it's scary knowing how easily you can lose your shirt by these low life losers that prey on innocent people that are probably already strapped for money. Go get a job like the rest of us you low life pieces is ....please people anything that seems to good to be true, always is!

I was contacted by a Mrs. Kim Roberts The person said they were relocating soon from GA and their needed a dog sitter they where moving in to their new apartment. The person wanted me to receive a check from them in a an amount and wanted me to take the portion for the first weeks pay then another for ther materials and the other to send me thekey and can give me the address to the home and the key. I did not give them any of my personal like social or bank information but i did give them my address and phone number and email. What should i do if i get the check? I am not scared to recieve that fake check under my name. How can I cut conversation with them.

Can I still report even if it happened to me about a year ago

I didn't cash the check because the person at the bank told me it was fake.

. The check arrived at my house in an opened envelop.

I'm really scared because they know where I live. And have my email and phone number.

Should I send the check back? Tear it ?
I'm really worried about my safety.

Should I tell the police ?

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