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"Re-shipping fraud," and how to avoid it

PASADENA, Calif. - A new scheme targeting people who want to work from home is growing in popularity. It's called "re-shipping fraud" and getting involved could truly cost you. 

"Most of the victims are thinking they are doing it as a 'work at home' job and have no idea they are tied to any scam whatsoever," said U.S. Postal inspector Stephanie Harden.

 That's what the criminals want you think. They market these jobs to people trying to find work, usually on the internet. 

"Receive packages at their home, re-wrap them and send them usually overseas," added Harden.

Postal inspectors say a large percentage of these scams originate in eastern Europe and Nigeria. The goods include computers, cameras and other electronics usually bought with stolen credit cards. The person who thought they were just making extra money working from home becomes part of a crime and can even be arrested. 

Harden continues, saying: "Credit card companies will contact local police departments and say there is an address in your county receiving stolen property because the credit cards are no good." 

Postal inspectors offer these tips: 

-Don't give your personal information to a person or company you don't know. 

-Be suspicious of any offer that does not pay a regular salary or involves working for an overseas company. 

-Check out the company with the better business bureau or state attorney general. 

-Ask this question. "Why am i the middle man? There is no reason why a merchant can't send things to customers directly," said Harden.

If you believe you're a victim of a re-shipping scam, you can file a complaint with postal inspectors online. 

To learn more, go to

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