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Back January 16th, 2016 Forward
Cheeky Fuckers! (The Employment Scammers Strike Again) - "LKT Company"

The fake job scammers are at it again. This time, they're sending stuff out under my email address! How do I know this? Well, I woke up this morning to discover I had an inbox full of delivery failure notices.

So here's the ad body:

scam body )

The bits in square brackets are where the script which sends these things out picks from a list of options to "personalise" the emails. Essentially, one of those options is chosen for each version of the mail at random (where there's only one option, the text itself is optional), in order to bypass spam filters on the servers they're hijacking to get their "message" out (the spam filters are looking for large amounts of similar text; the programs which generate these emails are evolving in lock-step with the filtering programs. If you're ever looking for a good locus for emergent AI, consider the possibilities of email filtering and spam blocking software, and the stuff designed to get around it!).

Now, the email address to check for "more details" varies with each of the letters - here's a list of the selection I have, if you're wanting to know what to beware of:

List below fold )

The Subject lines also vary. Again, here are the ones I have available from the sample of delivery failure notices.

List below fold )

(Incidentally - this is why keeping track of the subject lines and body text of these emails is a bit of a waste of time. The body text is boilerplate, the subject line is randomised.)

On to the scam flags flying:

1) They're offering too much. For full-time work, they're offering "up to" $5900AUD per month, which is $295 per day, or $36.88 per hour, plus bonuses, for largely unskilled admin work. Note the "up to" there - that's the theoretical maximum you could earn in a month. The actual amount you'll be paid is probably much lower, if, indeed,you're likely to be paid at all, rather than having your accounts hoovered out.

2) A lot of the details essential to a standard job ad are missing or skimped. There's no mention of who the company is in quite a lot of the ads (because it doesn't exist), there's no listing of what kinds of skills and experience they're looking for (because the main skill or quality they're after is gullibility). The contact address is a hotmail throw-away account with no reference to the name of the company either (which is a rather severe mismatch to the story of a company which is big enough to be trading with clients in the USA, Europe and Asia, especially given the comparatively low cost of domain names and domain hosting).

3) The economy world-wide is largely contracting. You can hear the economic gloom and doom forecasts any time you turn on the TV or radio, or any time you look at a news article online or in a newspaper. In that kind of economic environment, employment becomes harder to get - there is a surplus of people looking for work, and a deficit of available employment for them to participate in. In such an economy, there is no need for a legitimate employer to reach out to random people on the internet if they're seeking employees. Indeed, most job ads I'm looking at these days say they're only going to be contacting the successful candidates for interviews, due to the sheer volume of replies.

4) Googling "LKT Company" brings up at least two scam warnings already. This is always something of a hint. About the only difference between the current "jobs" being offered and the previous scam is that the amount of money has been increased by $100AUD on each level.

5) They hijacked my flippin' email account to send these things out! (I grant you, that one's a bit of a personal thing). Needless to say I've altered my password. But if you EVER receive a job offer purporting to be sent from megpie71 at yahoo dot com dot ay you, it's guaranteed to be a scam. I don't do HR, and if I did do HR, I would be sending things out under a corporate email address, not from my private email.

There isn't a job open, the money doesn't exist, and if they had anything decent to offer they wouldn't need to be hijacking other people's email addresses in order to pass the message on.

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