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Thousands of job seekers have been targeted by scammers on WhatsApp. Here is the first part of Euronews Next’s investigation into the global shakedown.

“Hi, I’m Amelia from Adecco Ltd. Would you be interested in flexible roles, may I share more details?”

This is a text Marc Bonvin, a macro analyst based in London, received on WhatsApp on December 20, 2022. He was looking to change jobs and the text piqued his interest, so he asked for more information.

“When the person replied, I knew this was a scam,” said Bonvin. “Amelia” was offering him “big projects” and a generous salary paid through an encrypted wallet. 

In October, he got a second text, again offering him job prospects.

Bonvin is one of thousands of people being targetted on WhatsApp by a scam that has already squeezed an estimated €100 million out from thousands of victims all over the globe, according to AI cybersecurity firm CloudSEK.

Some of the world’s largest recruitment firms, such as Reed and Hays, have all been impersonated in this phishing scam.

“Please be aware that NO Adecco representative will ever request payment of any kind from a candidate,” said Adecco, the company impersonated in the message Bonvin received.

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