HEADLINES

CT BBB Investigating Another Work-From-Home Scam

   
   
CROMWELL, CT — Recently, Better Business Bureau Serving Connecticut opened another work-from-home scam investigation. This time, the focus was on the business practices of Groovy USA, LLC. Beginning in late May and continuing into June, our office received more than half a dozen inquiries from Oklahoma, Wisconsin, Virginia, Maryland and beyond about a company purporting to be headquartered in Hamden, Connecticut. Victims include a single father of three young children and a college student who was looking to make extra money. These victims say they were approached via email (see photo) and offered a "work from home" opportunity that they now realize didn’t exist. 
 
Candidates who accepted the offer were asked to complete employment forms requesting personal information including social security numbers, birthdates, and banking information for direct deposit. They were given a user account to access an online dashboard to log their activities. They began to receive shipments that they were instructed to inspect, repackage and ship to another address. 
 
At the end of the initial month, when employees were due to be paid, they found their login credentials were no longer valid and their attempts to contact Groovy USA, LLC by phone or email were ignored. These employees never received payment, and all shipments ceased at the same time. 
 
One victim reached out to BBB saying, “at the time of me taking this job I had several other job offers but being I have Lupus and I am a single father of three little ones, 5,6,7, it’s hard to work as it is. I thought this was a blessing to me and my kids.” 
 
A Virginia woman told BBB, “…just thought it was legit... the pay was amazing. I just wanted a work from home job since I am a college student.”
 
Our investigation revealed that the company never occupied the Hamden address used to register the LLC. In fact, the property’s owner told BBB the vacant industrial site hasn’t housed any businesses for more than eight years.   
 
Other than the company website (groovyusa.com), which no longer exists, we discovered no other digital evidence of this company. All email addresses for Groovy USA LLC "supervisors" are inactive. All attempts by BBB Serving CT to contact the company by email, phone and USPS have been unsuccessful. 
 
Better Business Bureau has issued a consumer alert to make potential employees aware of Groovy USA, LLC’s business practices. 
 
Several victims have indicated their willingness to speak with the media. Please contact Better Business Bureau Serving Connecticut for their information. 
 
 
How to avoid these scams: 
 
Research the job offer before sending personal information. Call or go directly to the actual company's website for contact information to verify the job posting. 
 
Check on businesses at BBB.org and search bbb.org/scamtracker if they claim to be offering jobs.  
 
Do an internet search with the name of the employer/company and the word “scam” to see if there are reports involving job scams. 
 
Google the company’s physical address. If it’s a virtual office or a UPS location, it’s likely a scam. 
 
Examine the email address of those offering jobs to see if it matches the protocols used by an actual company. Be alert to Gmail business email addresses. 
 
Create a separate email address when posting a resume on job boards or applying for jobs. This can help detect “offers” from scam employers you did not contact. 
 
Set up a second bank account simply to handle pay for jobs where you have never met the employer in person. 
 
 
For More Information 
 
The in-depth investigative study -- Job Scams: BBB study finds job scams increased during pandemic, warns job seekers to verify employment offers to avoid illegal jobs, identity theft and fake checks -- details the many forms employment fraud takes and the scams that often result. Read the full study.  Download the PDF.  View all study materials.

Subscribe

Follow [townName] HamletHub