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AIBU to think the 'job' sounds like a scam?

(42 Posts)
WeAreEternal Fri 19-Dec-14 14:23:04

My friend 'Lauren' has been a SAHM for over 10 years. she recent decided to go back to work part time but has really struggle to find anything with being unemployed for over a decade.

A few weeks ago she applied for an online sales job on the job centre website, the employer contacted her a week later and offered her a telephone interview.
The man she spoke to told her that he was the MD of a small electrical repair company and a year ago expanded his company to include buying and selling secondhand gadgets.
He now has a small team of people who he works with, basically they buy broken smart phones, laptops and tablets, fix them and then sell them.
The company has been doing well and they want to expand to online selling, and this is what he was advertising for.
He is looking for someone to make adverts and sell the reconditioned gadgets on eBay.
He said he would pay £50 for every item sold and 10% of the final value to her.

It all sounded great, until she mentioned these parts.
He said he wanted to trial it first so wanted someone willing to use their own eBay account for the first few sales as he didn't want to go to the haste of setting up a selling account if it wasn't going to be successful.
He also said that he would take photos and send them to Lauren, she would do the listing, sell the item, take the payment, forward it to him and then he would post the item and send her the tracking details to give to the buyer.

As soon as she told me she wouldn't be handling the items I thought it sounded dodgy, but when she said that the guy wants her to take the money and send it into him I was convinced it was a scam but she said the MD assured her that it was all above board and that she would have the tracking details to prove the item had been sent.

I would like the ever honest opinions of MN please, what do you think of this job?

I will be showing Lauren this thread to convince her this is a scam

EatShitDerek Fri 19-Dec-14 14:24:23

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

SunnyBaudelaire Fri 19-Dec-14 14:25:28

it sounds like a well known scam

RojaGato Fri 19-Dec-14 14:25:33

I applied for a job and the details ended up being like this. It sounded too dodgy to me- basically like it could be a front for selling stolen goods, and then if it gets rumbled you are on the hook and the "MD" disappears without a trace?

youareallbonkers Fri 19-Dec-14 14:27:55

just google the company name and his name.

HeraldAngelSinging Fri 19-Dec-14 14:28:05

Would the potential employer have access to her own e-bay account? That would probably mean access to her bank details wouldn't it I'm not well up on this sort of thing but I'd be very careful of this one.

listsandbudgets Fri 19-Dec-14 14:28:21


She forwards him the money (minus £50 and 10%). He then does not send the goods. She finds herself with a complaint on ebay followed by a chargeback on paypal while he walks off with the money.

There's a good chance the goods don't even exist.

I wouldn't touch it with a barge pole.

HeraldAngelSinging Fri 19-Dec-14 14:28:22

I meant access to the OP's bank account.

PatriciaHolm Fri 19-Dec-14 14:28:39


She lists item, takes payment, forwards payment to him and he either never sends goods or sends broken/stolen ones. Buyers raises a dispute, gets their money refunded from her PayPal account, and of course she never sees a penny back.

It makes no sense that someone wouldn't set up their own account if they were legit - it's no hassle and it starts to build feedback. It's a scam.

SunnyBaudelaire Fri 19-Dec-14 14:29:04

listsandbudgets has it spot on

GailLondon Fri 19-Dec-14 14:29:26

Sounds very dodgy. Paying her £50 for every item sold? Just for making an ebay advert which you can do in 2 minutes? And never even seeing the items in question....stay well away.

vindscreenviper Fri 19-Dec-14 14:30:18

Perhaps the guy has had his own ebay account closed for being dodgy some reason?
It does sound suss, do jobcentres check up on potential wideboys employers?

SorchaN Fri 19-Dec-14 14:30:25

Almost certainly a scam. A reputable business can easily open an Ebay seller's account. Tell your friend to run away fast!

AlpacaYourThings Fri 19-Dec-14 14:32:27

This is so blatantly a scam.

I know this sounds mean but I can't believe people are gullible enough to believe this.

listsandbudgets Fri 19-Dec-14 14:35:41

smile Patriciaholmes cross posted with me and proved great minds think alike!

NotActuallyAMum Fri 19-Dec-14 14:37:44

I agree with AlpacaYourThings, how can people think these things are real?

If it was genuine we'd all be doing it

IloveOreossx Fri 19-Dec-14 14:39:35

Ironically a friend of mine was burnt like this. Single mum, on the edge of being homeless at the time (she's fine now) took the risk out of desperation and was forced to pay back £1430. Stay well away Lauren.

IloveOreossx Fri 19-Dec-14 14:41:00

Btw, no job like this (advertising etc) pays 50% commission.

SunnyBaudelaire Fri 19-Dec-14 14:41:41

you see this kind of scamming scum - poetic yes? - can easily take advantage of single parents returning to the job market or desperately trying to make some extra.

vindscreenviper Fri 19-Dec-14 14:47:14

Would a JSA claimant be sanctioned for refusing to accept this job offer?

SunnyBaudelaire Fri 19-Dec-14 14:48:28

no i really wouldnt think so

LurkingHusband Fri 19-Dec-14 14:52:34

Sounds like a company trying to avoid HMRC finding them through eBay. Which I suspect grin is illegal.

Personally I'd forward the emails (anonymously) to HMRC, for a little dekko. After all, we know it's the coalition priority to stamp out tax avoidance, so you'd be doing a civic duty.

SunnyBaudelaire Fri 19-Dec-14 14:54:50

i would say it is a bit more than tax avoidance LurkingH

WeAreEternal Fri 19-Dec-14 14:55:55

Thank you all for the replies.
You have all said exactly what I was thinking.

Lauren isn't usually this gullible but I think the man she spoke to was just very convincing.
She said he sounded old and said he didn't understand eBay, which was why he wanted someone experienced in selling on there.
He also said that if the first few sales went well he would pay her extra to set up the official selling page.

I think this man had a very good story and explained away any inconsistencies very well.

LurkingHusband Fri 19-Dec-14 15:00:32


probably. But it's useful to know who'll get interested first. Regardless of other aspects of the scam - no matter how criminal - if there's an HMRC angle, it's always best to notify. Because (1) we've all read about reporting things to the police, and finding nothing happens, and (2) if you knew what HMRC could do when engaged, you'd be in for a month of sleepless nights.

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