So I was looking for a job on the Internets one day and I happened upon an ad for a company in search of a Customer Service Representative. There was no reason to suspect that the ad wasn’t legitimate. Here, judge for yourself:

XXXX, Inc. is a leading custom software, web & database development company delivering world-class outsourcing services for both Fortune 500 and venture start-up companies around the globe.

Currently, we are looking for a Customer Service Representative.


• Follows departmental policies and procedures, particularly in regards to customer confidentiality
• Accurately enters or confirms customer information into database; initiates and/or completes proper request forms in assisting customers.
• Effectively uses computer systems for tracking, information gathering, and/or troubleshooting.
• Perform any other duties assigned


High school education or equivalent. Must be able to perform data entry and basic computer skills

Seemed like your run-of-the-mill CSR ad. Nothing special. There was no mention of pay, or of the location of the company, although I assumed that it was Chicago-based since it was advertised on the web site of a local weekly newspaper. I e-mailed my résumé through the Craig's List link and to my surprise received an e-mail response almost immediately. I was informed by Recruiting Agent, Daniel Clarke, that my application was under review. Mr. Clark also informed me that his employer, which I will not divulge the name of as they are a real and legitimate company who likely have no knowledge of what was about transpire, was looking for a customer service agent to work from home. The pay was twenty bucks an hour. Well, you can read it for yourself:

January 26, 2009 8:25:21 AM CST

My name is Daniel Clarke Recruiting Agent to XXXX INC. We have received your job application posted to us; your resume is under review. Below is the applicant we are looking for.


Class Title: Customer Service Representative
Class Code: 9933
Job Class: Independent Employee (Work from Home)
Pay Grade: 509
Salary: $20/Hour, 5-8hrs a day, Monday - Friday (Monthly Payment)

• Follows departmental policies and procedures, particularly in regards to customer confidentiality
• Effectively uses computer systems for tracking, information gathering, and/or troubleshooting.
• Receiving and disbursement of Payment to Orphanage Homes, Less
Perform any other duties assigned

• Phone Line & Internet
• Computer PC OR Notebook

• Do you have a Computer and Internet and a phone Line?
• Do you have another Job and if yes, Is it a full time Job or a part time Job.
• Will you be able to dedicate at least 5 hours (Part-time)
or 8hrs (Full Time) per day 9am-2pm or 9am-5pm, Monday – Friday?

Reply back to me if you are interested in this position and meet the requirement.

Daniel Clarke
Recruiting Officer

This didn't seem to jibe with the ad they placed and the "Payment to Orphanage Homes" line that appears in the job responsibilities section seemed a little suspect. Not only that, but I was a little suspicious of how quickly I had seemingly been "hired" for this work-from-home position. Groucho Marks famously said that he didn't care to belong to any club that would accept people like him as a member. That's generally my feeling about employers. I don't know if I can trust a company that would hire me so quickly. Let's face it, even with a substantial amount of padding, my résumé is not all that impressive. At any rate, I answered Daniel Clark’s brief interview questions and received the following response the next day:

January 27, 2009 10:09:21 AM CST

Thank you for your email, your answers to the question has been received and approved. You will be working from home as an independent employee and you will need to have a computer with internet connectivity at home in order to be effective in this job.

This is a work from home position and your location do not matter, you will be working on General Customer Service duties, your assignments will be made available to you vie email, phone and IM, you will be assigned with a supervisor that will guide you through your assignments, your salary will be made available to you by certified check or wire transfer.

Attached is a Contract Agreement Form (CAF) with contains our terms and conditions associated with this position. Review the contract agreement form carefully, sign the last page the CAF and return back via E-mail or Fax #: 270-812-6055, contact via email as soon as you have sent the signed CAF, to transfer you to your supervisor for your complete employment profile and assignment updates.


Daniel Clarke
Recruiter Officer

Seems a little suspect, no? More tomorrow.


sharmila said…
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