Over the last month or so it appears that internet scamsters are targeting au pair and nanny matching sites ( they have been doing so on the big job boards for years now ), they seem to use 2 methods:

Register as a family and then contact nannies pretending to be a wealthy host family really interested in employing the nanny and then as a measure of goodwill send a cheque or money order for a ridiculous amount and for no good reason, they then and using all sorts of guises request that part of that advance be sent back via Western Union or other method. Meanwhile of course the original advance doesn't clear or proves to be a fraudulent transaction.

Register as a nanny with fantastic qualifications, enter into a long exchange of emails with a prospective family ( to make it all look legitimate ), and usually they will claim that they have a visa for the country where the family lives and then at the last minute request money to be sent using some excuse or other, for example nannyID 24706 Monica Bassong .

These scams of course can be very elaborate and seem very convincing, but the point is NEVER, EVER send money to a stranger.

We are monitoring all IP address' ( that pinpoints a user's location ), because they will often register as a family in the US and they are actually located in Nigeria. We will also be posting a forum on the site very soon and anyone who has had an experience that they wish to share can do so.

Meanwhile if you are involved in anything that vaguely resembles the above, please be very careful and you are welcome to contact us at any time.

For more information please check the Metropolitan Police’s fraud alert.

10th May 2006 Update:

The nanny forum is now functional so you can also post your warning there.

5th June 2006 Update:

As we have made life difficult for the scamsters they are trying a new method. They register as a family and then contact nannies whom cannot get an au pair or nanny visa for the (supposed) country of residence of the family. So for example the family will claim that they live in the UK and will contact a Russian nanny. The nanny would love to come to the UK but finds out that she is not eligible for a nanny/au pair visa for the UK. The family then claim that they have a company or lawyer that in fact can get them the visa, but of course at a cost and they demand that she sends this money to the company or lawyer who will then arrange the visa. Obviously as soon as the money is sent she will never hear from the family again. Usually the company or lawyer will have a yahoo email address, which in itself is a giveaway, any reputable company or lawyer will have a website and an email address associated with it. If you are not entitled to a visa, nobody will be able to arrange it for you.

12th October 2006 Update:

We are happy to announce that by monitoring all IP address’ and therefore knowing which country a registration is originating from we have eliminated nearly all the scam registrations. But please remain vigilante and inform us of anything suspect.

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