OSBI Investigating Babysitting Scam In Edmond

Wednesday, December 10th 2014, 6:30 pm
By: News 9

Scam artists are logging onto the popular website Care.com, trying to dupe babysitters into helping them with the lure of high paying jobs.

The OSBI tells News 9 it is happening all over the country, and recently happened to an Edmond college student.

“I was really excited, because I had been searching for a job like this and it worked perfectly with my schedule,” said one college student who did not want to be identified since she is still pursuing legitimate babysitting jobs on the site.

She says she posted her resume on Care.com to be a nanny and got a response for a job paying top dollar!

“It's exactly what I had been looking for,” she said.

She then exchanged emails with the person who claimed to be a deaf woman with two children – and who was moving from New York to Edmond. She claimed one of the children was in a wheelchair. She even sent pictures - and a letter.

“She said this could be a temporary or permanent job depending how your schedule looks.”

The stranger then asked the student to make a wheelchair purchase for their arrival. She even said she would mail her a check in the amount of almost $3,000. And that's when the student told her mom, who contacted the OSBI.

“What they are trying to do is to get the person to deposit a fake check, a bogus check into their account,” said Gary Perkinson, an agent with the OSBI Special Investigations unit.

Sure enough the Edmond college student received a FedEx envelope with a very big check inside. A check she had no plans of depositing since she knew it was a scam.

“It's definitely a fake check.”

As it turns out, the check was not even made in the right amount. But on the surface, the check looks legit. It even had watermarks on the back. But OSBI agents say it is bogus. And the college student is just glad she didn't cash it.

“If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. And in this case it is too good to be true,” said Perkinson.

And the OSBI says if you or a loved one have fallen for this scam, call your local law enforcement agency and file a report. Another thing you should do is double and triple check references if you are posting things like jobs online. And also check your credit report for any discrepancies.

News 9 reached out to Care.com, who then sent us the following response via email:

“Care.com is an online marketplace that allows families to meet and connect with providers of caregiving services. Overpayment scams are often targeted at caregivers and we continuously research processes to improve the safety of our site for our members. To that end, we have implemented a number of features, including resources on how to avoid consumer fraud scams, a monitored messaging system and fraud detection tools, to create a safer environment. Equally as important to the measures we have instituted is for families and caregivers to exercise their own appropriate steps in safety.”