Reshipping refers to a scam that usually involves unsuspecting individuals being tricked into receiving stolen goods and then forwarding them to criminals. This scam works because, often, by the time the fraud is detected, the criminals have received the goods, while the trail stops with the victim of the scam.
How does reshipping work?
- Initial contact. Scammers post fake job offers for a “shipping coordinator”, “merchandise handler”, or even “gift wrapper.”
- Job role. Once someone accepts the job offer, they’re instructed to receive packages at their home. The criminals may spend weeks and even months building trust before requesting the person to receive goods.
- Repackaging. After receiving the item, the person is told to repackage it, often removing and discarding original invoices or labels.
- Shipping. After the item has been repackaged, it has to be forwarded to another address, often to another country.
What happens to a reshipping scam victim?
- Legal trouble. Even as a victim of a scam, the person who handled stolen goods can still be held responsible.
- Financial loss. Needless to say, scammers may promise to pay generously, a promise which they will never fulfill. Or, criminals may also instruct their target to pay for shipping and later promise to reimburse their costs, which would lead to the person directly losing money.