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Unemployed Vulnerable To Internet Scams

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Written By Jodi Brooks
DENVER (CBS4) – A series of Internet scams have recently started preying on many Coloradans who are unemployed.

Such people are a very vulnerable group and often when they get an email requesting an interview, they can’t respond fast enough.

But remember, if something seems suspicious, trust yourself because not everything appears as it seems.

“All I want is a job,” said Jerry Dionisio.

It’s the same with Donna Price.

“It’s really difficult finding a job out there,” she said.

Both Price and Dionisio use Craigslist to search for jobs. They’ve had similar situations with drastically different outcomes.

“I didn’t give them any information,” said Price.

And Dionisio did.

“I should have never ever answered this email because now my life is in jeopardy with this. I mean they have the address to my house, they have my cell phone number, they have everything. They could wreck me,” Dionisio said.

Dionisio answered a “Lock Master” ad on Craigslist by sending his resume.

“I heard back two days later, and it was a little fishy,” he said.

The email he received had a lot of funny dashes and dots. It asked Dionisio to submit an online application, and halfway through the application was a request to run a credit check. He admits, reluctantly, that he continued.

“I filled out the credit report, and of course you gave your Social Security number, date of birth, your credit card, you needed a credit card to authenticate that I could go ahead and purchase this,” Dionisio said.

When he finished the application, he got a bad feeling.

He searched the Secretary of State’s website and DORA, Colorado’s Department of Regulatory Agencies, for information about the company.

“There’s nothing listed anywhere,” he said.

Now he’s panicked. He has called his bank, canceled his credit cards and put acredit watch on his credit reports.

“I’m kicking myself because I answered this email,” Dionisio said.

On the other hand, Donna Price trusted her gut.

“I got out when I saw I had to pay some money before I could go any further,” she said.

Remember, when applying to a company online, at the very least verify the address and get a local phone number.

Additional Resources

The website Scam Checker has the scam Price and Dionisio were sent listed as a scam in cities all around the country.

If you go to WhoIs.com you’ll find that the company Jerry Dionisio responded to has a domain name that’s registered in Moscow — todsemanagement.com — and it was just created Feb. 17, 2011.

At ic3.gov, an FBI website, you can file a complaint and look out for other online scams.

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