Watch Out For the Package Reshipping Work-at-Home Scam

There is a work at home scam that's been floating around for years that I still see on occasion, and it's one of the worst — the package reshipping scam.

This is very similar to the check cashing scam, only much worse with more legal repercussions.

What is the package reshipping scam?

You see an advertisement for a work at home job that sounds pretty easy with good pay.

All you're expected to do is receive packages at your home (which might be anything … laptops, iPhones, game systems are a few common examples) and then reship those packages to someplace else (possibly overseas).

This position may be advertised as “package processor,” “logistics manager,” or anything else that sounds professional. But the description will give it away.

You're told that you'll be paid a flat rate per package sent.

The work will sound pretty easy and the pay fair, which is why so many people fall for it.

But what many people don't ever ask themselves is, why would this company need me to do this for them?

If they're going to go to the trouble to ship the packages to me, why can't they just ship the packages themselves to their final destinations? Why would they need a middle-man?

And it's at that point that the big red warning flags should always go up!

What You're Actually Doing

If you fall for this scam, you could actually be reshipping stolen goods or goods purchased with stolen credit card numbers.

The people “hiring” you to do this don't want anything traced back to them, so instead they mislead innocent people who just want home-based jobs.

The scammers make it so the packages come to your house initially, not theirs. This way the person who will get in trouble with the law is you, not them!

And they will still get to keep their stolen merchandise because they tricked you into forwarding the package on to them.

But when the police come knocking, they'll come to your door first.

And they may never even find the real criminals because chances are good that the address you were told to forward the package(s) to is either a PO box or someplace overseas — making the crooks basically untraceable.

Scammers are Smart

Innocent people have actually gone to jail for this, so don't let it happen to you! The criminals will go to great lengths to make themselves look like a legitimate company.

But no matter how legit they appear on the outside, you have to wonder why they would want you to ship packages for them.

There's just no way around the fact that if they could have something shipped to you, they could just go ahead and ship it to the place they're asking you to forward it on to. Something like that should always seem fishy.

Scams like this are still out there and people still fall for them all the time. Actually, it's a big part of what gives work at home it's negative reputation.

Nowadays there are actually lots of legitimate home-based jobs, but several years ago there weren't — and scams like this were absolutely everywhere.

Have you been scammed?

If you are currently in the middle of a reshipping scam, there are some things you can do. For starters, don't ship those packages!

Contact your local authorities and explain what's going on. Forward any correspondence you have from the “company” to the police — anything that would help track them down.

Also, definitely don't cash any checks you've been sent as payment for shipping packages because you could get into legal trouble again for cashing fraudulent checks.

If you've already been shipping packages, don't ship any more and again, contact the police.

You should also contact theĀ FBI Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) with the details.

Want to Avoid Work at Home Scams Completely?

The one resource on the web that guarantees scam-free, flexible, remote jobs is FlexJobs. They list hundreds of job leads daily across many different categories.

And better yet, they have no ads on their site. But because there are no ads, they do charge a small fee for access. This is how they are paid back for their efforts in finding the leads.

You can get access for 14 days for just $2.95. And if you feel that the price isn't worth it, you can cancel easily at any point and you won't be billed again.

I've had a subscription myself off and on over the years, and I've always find a lot of good remote job leads listed.

You can go here to try FlexJobs.

Good luck!