Saturn Jobs Fraud

Saturn Jobs Fraud

For the last 2 months, Web chat rooms in India have been buzzing
with speculation about jobs in Japan that sound too good to be true.
A company called Saturn Jobs in Dubai (as of writing, the web site
is still running at www.saturnjobs.com) was offering a range of
positions in Shibuya, including those for accounts clerks and
computer engineers. Applicants would submit their resumes then
receive a message back saying that after review of their
credentials, they would be offered a job on the spot - providing
they paid 75-100 pounds as a processing fee. According to a recent
article in the Hindu Herald (http://www.khaleejtimes.com/
DisplayArticle.asp?xfile=data/theuae/ 2004/April/
theuae_April522.xml§ion=theuae), thousands fell for the scam
and paid their money. Apparently the scamsters fled Dubai early
March for parts unknown.

I was first alerted to the scam in late March, when I started
getting mails from individuals in India trying to find out more
about a company called Sekiotma Furuhashi. Not only had I never
heard of such a company but the address was a dead giveaway to
anyone living in Japan that something was wrong. It went:

7-26-3 Sendagi, Kume-Gun,
Shibuya-Ku, Tokyo 113-0012
Hmmm, yes, well... Kume-gun is in Okayama - a little bit further
than the Shibuya-ku city limits.

The thing to remember is that in the current online economy, there
is NO job service charging placement fees to the candidate (I'm not
talking about freelancer listing boards here). And certainly not in
Japan, where such a practice is illegal. So if someone asks you for
money to place you, unless they are rendering a genuine add-on
service such as writing your resume or giving you proper career
counseling, then beware and take your business somewhere else.

The scam was amazingly successful. The landlord for Saturn Jobs'
operation, a company called Self Corp has apparently been deluged
by "hundreds of calls a day" from job applicants trying to locate
the company. The saddest thing about the scam is that it has hurt
people who can least afford it. Apparently many of the duped in
India and Bangladesh were unemployed, and the payments were
made with help from their families. The prospect of working in
Japan started a beacon of hope for these people, and is now just
one more dream turned to dust.

Terrie Lloyd is the founder of DaiJob, Inc. He also writes a weekly
newsletter for entrepreneurs and business people about business
and political opportunities in Japan. You can find the newsletter at
www.terrie.com.
For further contact with Terrie, email him at
terrie.lloyd@daijob.com.

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