Is this a scam?

Out of the blue the other day I got a Whatapp message from someone claiming to be from Randstad Recruitment trying to fix me up with some home based work. I assumed they got my details from LinkedIn or Indeed.

Anyway, it's all based around ASO (App Store Optimization) which I'd never heard of before. They trained me on this platform called YouAppi and it all seems very easy, literally just clicking through 40 odd app merchants to boost their visibility / scores and earning a commission each time. I don't fully understand what it is I'm doing exactly, but it was simple and fast.

However, once you progress past the training account they expect you to chip in a bit of your own money, around £17 worth, via cryptocurrency...

"We need to have a minimum start-up capital of 100 USDT in our account. The role of the start-up capital is to help us generate real traffic for APPs of the merchants we have matched with the task. But you don't have to worry, after you complete a set of all APP optimizations, the amount you can withdraw includes the deposited money + random bonus + commission."

Anyway, I sort of hit the brakes after that while I investigate this further, even though I don't really see where the scam is at the moment because the cryptowallet and YouAppi seem fine, but the person I'm messaging is being overly friendly and asking too many questions which is a massive red flag. Messages day and night along the lines of:

"What are your plans for tonight?"

"Until now, I still don't know your name."

"Your name is very nice, I will remember your name."

"What are your usual interests and hobbies?"

"Welcome this wonderful morning with a smile. I hope your have a great day. Good morning to you!"

"What are your plans for today?"

"Where do you live in the UK?"

"Can you guess what I'm going to do now?"

"How was shopping?"

I haven't revealed anything too personal, just keeping my answers vague. Should I follow my instincts and block and delete this person or is this ASO thing legit?


  • On-the-coast
    On-the-coast Posts: 382
    First Anniversary Name Dropper First Post
    edited 14 October 2023 at 6:46PM
    "Out of the blue the other day I got a Whatapp message"...
    Nothing good comes out of the blue on Whatsapp. Ever.
    You don't really have to over-think what the scam might be.
    I'd guess the most likely one is that your crypto investment will multiply greatly... you'll be encouraged to add more real funds... and then wham... it's all gone forever.
    But many other bad things could happen if you're gullible or greedy enough.
    Stay safe.
    Be wise!
  • dan_wise
    dan_wise Posts: 18
    First Post First Anniversary Combo Breaker
    Edi81 said:
    Seriously?!? This has scam written all over it!

    I know, I know. Maybe they just caught me at a vulnerable time, it's been a weird week. You're absolutely right, thank you both. (shuffles off embarrassed)
  • cymruchris
    cymruchris Posts: 4,882
    First Anniversary First Post Name Dropper Photogenic
    dan_wise said:
    Edi81 said:
    Seriously?!? This has scam written all over it!

    I know, I know. Maybe they just caught me at a vulnerable time, it's been a weird week. You're absolutely right, thank you both. (shuffles off embarrassed)

    Don't be embarrassed. You've pretty much worked out for yourself that it was a scam before posting here. There are hundreds if not thousands of crypto/wallet scams out there - so you've stopped yourself before throwing all your money away. What would likely have been a small deposit would have no doubt needed more and more funds throwing at it for spectacularly wonderful returns in due course, that would no doubt show in your 'wallet' - but when you came to get your money - everything/everyone would magically disappear - including your money.
    An ex-bankrupt on a journey of recovery. Feel free to send me a DM reference credit building credit cards from the usual suspects :) Happy to help others going through what I've been through!
  • soolin
    soolin Posts: 71,870
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    I’ve had a few of those WhatsApp messages which I’ve ignored as scams, but I did wonder how the scam worked, so thank you for enlightening me. 
    I’m a Forum Ambassador and I support the Forum Team on the eBay, Auctions, Car Boot & Jumble Sales, Boost Your Income, Praise, Vents & Warnings, Overseas Holidays & Travel Planning , UK Holidays, Days Out & Entertainments boards. If you need any help on these boards, do let me know.. Please note that Ambassadors are not moderators. Any posts you spot in breach of the Forum Rules should be reported via the report button, or by emailing [email protected] views are my own and not the official line of MoneySavingExpert.
  • I've also had these 'out of the blue' WhatsApp scam messages offering wonderful jobs. Today I had a text purporting to be form Evri saying that they had been unable to deliver a parcel and asking me to click on a link to re-arrange. I didn't fall for it. I haven't ordered anything that Evri would be delivering and if there was anything coming they would have sent me a text in advance letting me know it was going to be delivered, which I haven't had. These scammers never give up.
  • In Whats App settings, under Privacy, there is an option to silence unknown callers.  With this turned on, people whose details are not in your contacts will still make your phone ring, but the call will automatically be silent so you won’t hear it.  

    Apologies, if not very well explained, but you can find more details by clicking the Learn More option under “Silence Unknown Callers”.  
  • Don’t feel embarrassed, you thought it might be a scam so you wisely asked others for their advice and stopped yourself from loosing money, definitely nothing to be embarrassed about.  You also may have helped others in the same position who see this thread and also stop before loosing money.
  • I have been similarly contacted by someone claiming they work for Randstad and then "referring" me to somone in HR who then supposedly would contact me about this ASO and training today.   I asked for the first and last name of the person from Randstad and they gave me someone's name who actually is listed on linked in as a recruiter for Randstad.  I also asked to send me an email with more info which she promised to do but did not.  I had a similar contact a couple of weeks ago and the guy kept chasing me.  These were all on What's app and I saw a different name then the person's claiming to be the one contacting me when I looked at the WA number.  Clearly these are scammers and I have change my privacy settings to limit unknown contacts in the future in Whats App.
  • This is a scam unfortunately.
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