Got this in my inbox today. It actually looks somewhat legit. It was sent through vresp.com, which has been around for over 11 years and does not seem to be spoofing its source (unlike many scam e-mails that pretend they came through CareerBuilder).
Job Title Article Writers
Type : Contract
Salary / Rate : 2500 USD / month
Job Duration : Not Specified
No.Applicants : 5
Job Source : Direct from Employer.
We are looking for native English speakers, a high level of fluency is imperative.
You should be creative, proactive, and capable of researching topics you may not have
much previous experience in.
You should be flexible with timing and quick.
You should be capable of committing to a relatively long working relationship with us.
You should write high quality articles, content that is both interesting and entertaining
as well as relevant to readers on the web.
You should have a basic understanding of Microsoft Word (although since you’re applying
for a job online, I’m sure you do).
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843 Mass Ave
Cambridge, Massachusetts 02139
So it's a contract article writer position, work from home, $2500 a month. None of it looks particularly overblown. It's not promising you a ridiculous amount or suggesting you'll be cashing checks or forwarding packages.
Still, it came unsolicited. I do not have a live resume on any job search site. Figuring that vresp.com was semi-legit, I clicked through to find out more details. There was a basic application form at articlebat.org.
First, a for-profit company should not be using a .org domain name. They are (or were) intended for non-ptofits. It's a bit dishonest to use a .org domain if you're not a non-profit.
Second, and more importantly, the domain has been in existence for ONE WEEK. It was registered on May 21st of this year. The address of the person registering it is a little house in the suburbs of Oslo, Norway (you can see a photo on Google maps), not Boston. And even more puzzling is the fact that it wasn't registered through a U.S. or Norwegian registrar, but through a Chinese registrar that ONLY offers their pages in Chinese (no English or Norwegian version). To add to the foreign flavor, the "about" page is full of grammar errors and OBVIOUSLY by someone who is not a native English speaker.
It is the disconnect... claiming to be affiliated with a company in Boston, but registered to an address in the Oslo suburbs, and registered through a Chinese registrar that doesn't cater to non-speakers of Chinese... that doesn't add up for me. I have a feeling that the company would never pay me for my work, and I'd have NO way of taking them to court if that happened. I'm not saying they're a scam. I'm just saying that there are enough oddities to put me (and you, if you've found this post) on guard.