The FBI is warning individuals who work or travel abroad to be on the lookout for phony job offers for positions in tech support or call center customer service. They promise competitive salaries, lucrative benefits, paid travel expenses as well as room and board.
The part they neglect to mention? The part about you being sent to a Scam Compound where you’ll be forced to commit cryptocurrency investment schemes (pig butchering) or tech support scams.
The criminals will take your passport and get violent if you don’t do their bidding. They also may assign you debts under the guise of travel fees and room and board. They then use this mounting debt, and the fear of local law enforcement, as additional ways to control your behavior.
Tips from the FBI on how to protect yourself:
Research the advertised company before accepting a job offer. Beware of vague language about the company or limited employment details.
Beware of job advertisements with unusually high salaries and many perks.
If you plan on relocating to a different country for a new job, inform family and friends of employment details, to include contact information from the job advertisement.
Prior to relocating, schedule regular check-ins with family and friends to confirm safety and well-being.
Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) at step.state.gov to receive safety, security, and travel advisories for your destination country. By registering for STEP, local US Embassy or US Consulates can contact you during an emergency.
If you are a victim of labor trafficking, contact the nearest US Embassy.
Sources: FBI, DOJ
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