Con artists posing as legitimate immigration service providers recently charged an Oakland woman $675 for fake application forms, pseudo counseling, and a bogus appointment with immigration.
“They seemed so nice!” said the woman.
The scammers are very polite and professional seeming, giving victims the impression that they are legitimate. They fax their victims official looking forms and give detailed (albeit phony) instructions on the application and interview process.
“It’s not just the money, but all of the information we gave them!”
The swindlers, who called themselves Immigration Forms Profession Center, collected all kinds of information from the woman including her social security number, present and past contact information for her and her children, as well as her signature.
“I feel so stupid!” the woman said.
These crooks have developed a very sophisticated scheme for tricking unsuspecting people into believing that they can help them with their applications. They have legitimate looking websites, materials, and call centers. Beware of imposters asking for your personal information and checks for immigration application and processing fees.
The correct website of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service is www.uscis.gov.
To file a complaint in English or Spanish, visit the FTC’s online Complaint Assistant or call 1-877-FTC-HELP (1-877-382-4357).
For more information on immigration scams see the website of the Federal Trade Commission.