TELECOM Digest Editor responded to a message sent by Mayra TABOR:
> [TELECOM Digest Editor's Note: Readers, perhaps you can tell me if
> this is a _legitimate_ employment opportunity or just another scam
> intended to get you to do a quick shuffle of money outbound before
> the excrement hits the propeller blades?
> In my limited examination of this company I note a few things:
> (1) They are looking for licensees to help them in their
> 'shipping and freight forwarding' business.
> (2) They seem quite eager to find people with a USA bank account; in
> fact a question on their online employment application asks about
> your USA bank routing number.
> (3) Their 'home office' (of which they show lots of pictures of happy
> industrious employees) is in St. Petersburg, _Russian Federation_. I
> do not intend to besmirch their character and accuse them of being a
> bunch of crooks, however I do recall reading somewhere of two Russian
> 'hackers' who were from St. Petersburg, Russia who the United States
> FBI wanted very badly but could not get them extradited.
> Anyway, I pass this along in the event any one or more of you feel
> like applying for the job, and are quick witted enough to hang onto
> your purse (and only provide accurate ABA routing numbers, etc) in the
> event you absolutely must. Here is the message I got a few days ago,
> and you can check out the corresponding web page. PAT]
> Would you like to earn some extra money working from home? We offer
> you a great opportunity!
> Our company Ship & Pay International is looking for reliable and
> trustworthy people to be our representatives in your country!
> This is not a sales gimmick requiring you to pay setup fees or sign up
> to a mailing list. You will need no money and no special skills to
> start. Anyone can work with us!
> If you are interested, don't hesitate to visit our website:
> 1. A computer with access to the Internet, e-mail
> 2. 3-5 hours free during the week (mainly in the non-business hours)
> 3. Check your e-mail several times a day (each hour is welcome)
> 4. Be able to repeatedly lift 5-20 pound boxes.
> 5. Reply to e-mails immediately
> 6. We don't work with persons under 21
> 7. Bank account to receive payments
> 8. Account in: PayPal, E-gold (if possible)
> 9. Be able to answer phone calls
> 10. Be responsible, hard working and communicable
> If you would like to join our team please visit
> http://www.shipandpay.com/jobs.html and fill in the online application
> Thank you.
> Best regards,
> Ship & Pay International
> [TELECOM Digest Editor's Note: Now, it all appears to be an honest
> company trying to get started with a worldwide presence. But something
> leaves me feeling a bit queasy, even with those nice pictures on their
> web site, and happy, smiling employees; the picture of their office
> building, etc. What is going on? PAT]
If it smells even mildly bad avoid it. Trying to pet a skunk is always
[TELECOM Digest Editor's Note: And that, it seems, is the story of the
whole internet in the past few years; if it smells even a little, best
to avoid it. Very sad, really. I mean, there _are_ honest people in
Russia; just as there _are_ honest people in Nigeria. Can you imagine
the hassles _honest_ netizens in Nigeria must have in trying to
communicate with potential business associates in the United States?
Now, some people would probably say 'honest netizen in Nigeria' is an
oxymoron. Still others would probably say 'honest netizen' in and of
itself is an oxymoron. Do you remember the infamous cartoon several
years ago -- long, long before any of the nonsense in recent years was
even dreamed of -- called "Honesty on the Internet"? I think I will
get it and put it on our web page to give people a laugh. PAT]