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Local scam targeting job-seekers

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Updated: 6/27/2013 11:51 pm
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Action News is exposing a scam that directly targets people looking for a better job. The Better Business Bureau warns it's just a ploy to take your money and run.

The Northeast Florida chapter of the Better Business Bureau reports local complaints are pouring in about Blackshaw Search & Associates.

According to the BBB, although the company states on its Web site that “For years, we have been introducing multi-national companies…”, the company website, was actually only registered on June 6, 2013 using a post office box address in Phoenix, AZ.

The company claims to be located at One Independent Drive, Jacksonville, Fl. 32202. One Independent Drive is the location of multi-story office tower in downtown Jacksonville. Mail would not be delivered because there is no suite number listed for the company.

A search with the City of Jacksonville tax records finds no business tax receipt for this company, a requirement if they do business legally in Jacksonville. Furthermore, a search with the State of Florida finds no corporate or fictitious name registration for Blackshaw Search & Associates.

Local BBB president, Tom Stephens, warns the scammers often target the unemployed because "they are willing to jump into any opportunity."

The company contacts potential employees after obtaining personal information from job-hunting sites.

The scammers promise you a job but only after prospects take a pre-employment screening test.

"They're going to try to sell you a study guide and the study guide is all they're after," said Stephens.

After the money is sent, victims report that they never hear from Blackshaw Search & Associates again.

Stephens says there's a legitamite company with a similar name, "Blackshaw Partners" is a well-known employment headhunter-type firm. Stephens tells Action News that the phony company is "piggy-backing on that name."

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