Beware: Calls From "The Jobline" Actually $9/Minute Scam

Consumers report receiving automated message calls from a service calling itself “The Jobline” where you’re told they have jobs for you if you call back, but it turns out it’s just a scam. If you call the number back, you will get charged $9 per minute, according to messages left in online forums where people share information on telemarketing numbers. They seem to be using the number 976-4477 in different area codes. A scam targeting people already hard up for work and money, that’s pretty high on the Richter scale of sleaziness.

773-976-4477 [800notes] (Thanks to Skurry!)

(Photo: Getty)

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  1. theblackdog says:

    I’m curious as to how they got people’s phone numbers. Are these people who posted resumes on a place like monster.com, or are they just picking numbers out of the phone book?

    If it’s the former, that’s really screwed up.

  2. KIbbit says:

    didn’t monster get hacked…

  3. Spamwich says:

    @theblackdog: I wouldn’t be surprised. Multi-level marketers already do it, so I’m sure that these fraud artists wouldn’t be above that sort of thing.

  4. mike says:

    Some people just randomly dial numbers until they get hit. With automation, it doesn’t take long to go through all possible combinations.

  5. RandoX says:

    Of course, people hard up for work are less likely to be able to afford a legal retainer.

  6. tape says:

    interesting. I haven’t seen a 976 number advertised in years and years. these people are no doubt trying to take advantage of the fact that a lot of people may not have ever heard of 976 numbers or have forgotten about them.

  7. Ben Popken says:

    There’s a thing called an autodialer. 718-242-2001. 718-242-2002. 718-242-2003. etc, ad nauseum.

  8. Bix says:

    Y’know, this is a pretty smart scam, as we’re at the point where the majority of younger workers won’t know about 976 numbers since they’ve been a non-entity for so long.

  9. noquarter says:

    @Bix: In fact, I just came by here to ask how a random number was a toll number. I had no idea that 976 was anything to look out for.

    I’ve received several calls lately where, when I answer, an automated voice tells me to call another number to discuss some important matter (my credit card balance, a parking ticket owed by me, my car registration, etc.). They could have been 976 numbers and I wouldn’t have even noticed.

  10. my_imaginary_friends_bore_me says:

    I lock my cell phone so that only phone numbers that are in the phone book of my cell phone will go through. No unwanted phone calls!!

  11. Joedragon says:

    900 numbers do not work on cell phones.

  12. my_imaginary_friends_bore_me says:

    @Joedragon: It’s not just 900 numbers you have to worry about

  13. BlackFlag55 says:

    If I don’t recognize the phone number when a call comes, I don’t answer. That simple.

  14. induscreed says:

    hey its sanjay gupta from cnn

  15. kerry says:

    I’ve gotten messages from these people before, they seem to call during the day so I’ve never actually picked up one of their calls . . . singularly the most annoying message on earth. It’s a guy yelling “call the jobline! jobline! just call the jobline!” he must say “jobline” 40 times. Gah.

  16. TechnoDestructo says:

    @my_imaginary_friends_bore_me:

    Good for you. I presume you use a separate line for people who are not in your phone book, but who have legitimate business with you?

  17. Parting says:

    The photo is hilarious :)

  18. azntg says:

    Note to self: If there ever ANY temptation to actually call back a strange phone number, use a payphone. Got it!

  19. hossfly says:

    azntg at 05:48 PM Reply *
    Note to self: If there ever ANY temptation to actually call back a strange phone number, use a payphone. Got it!
    PAYPHONE??
    I can’t remember where i’ve seen a payphone in the last, say 8 years……

  20. TMurphy says:

    I wonder if you could get yourself a 976 number, then get yourself on as many telemarketing lists as possible, and see how many of the companies still call. If some call centers don’t automatically filter out 900’s or have their employees avoid 900’s , could make quite a bit of money chatting with the reps?

    Even if it wouldn’t work very well, it’d still be kinda funny.

  21. lestat730 says:

    @KIbbit: Monster getting hacked does sound a little familiar. Regardless of hacking, when I needed work and had my resume up on Monster, 90% of the emails/phone calls I got were obvious scams. Nothing like this $9 a min phone scam, but many ‘check cashing’ and ‘receiving products in the mail, wrapping them as gifts and mailing them off somewhere.’ In hindsight, I wouldn’t really recommend monster at all.

  22. @theblackdog: Everyone knows numbers are sold for profit. Hell, I had my cell phone a grand total of 2 days and my first unsolicited call came in.

  23. sam1am says:

    I have an idea – lets make a new service where we charge people money who don’t have any.

    I’m not expert, but there’s a major flaw in their business model.

  24. strathmeyer says:

    People still use Monster? I stopped after a dozen scams and no job leads.

  25. goldenmonkey says:

    @lestat730: I just got a call from this alleged jobline and didn’t call them. I did however report the number to the do not call ist as a violation. That probably won’t do anything, but we can hope.

    I’ve found that the majority of online job search engines are entirely useless. Everytime I post my resume I get like 50 calls per day from temp agencies, and most often if I answer ads I end up finding out they’re temp agencies. I already have a job, I’m not taking days off to take tests at a temp service then have them offer me a 3 day data entry job. I don’t even know how to look for a fucking job anymore. Craiglist and the local newspapers seem the best these days.