Immigration New Zealand warns of increasing visa scams

Immigration New Zealand warns of increasing visa scams

Immigration New Zealand warns of increasing visa scams

Potential migrants to New Zealand are being warned by the country’s immigration department that immigration scams are becoming more common as the country becomes more popular.

The scams themselves are versions of common attempts to defraud being practices in many Western countries. The most usual is perpetrated by scammers placing adverts for fake jobs at New Zealand hospitals, schools and hospitality industry sectors such as hotels.

The advertisements offer unrealistic salaries and guarantee work visas, but applicants are told to send their details and transfer a sum of money to begin the process. The second scam seems to be an import from the USA, whose immigration department warned against it some months ago.

It’s aimed at migrants already in New Zealand, who receive phone calls purporting to be from immigration informing them there is a problem with their visas. Again, instant payment via transfer or Western Union is requested under threat of arrest or deportation.

A number of people have already lost money to both these scams, and police are working to find the crooks responsible. It’s not known how those operating the second scam are able to get hold of immigrants’ phone numbers.

Meanwhile, an investigation by Australia’s ABC News has revealed that New Zealand is being increasingly targeted by people smugglers offering transportation to the country and fake passports containing forged visas. The scheme allows asylum seekers to travel on commercial flights rather than in boats.

People smugglers formerly aiming at Australia are now switching their attention to New Zealand and targeting wealthier refugees. The investigation suggested that key operators in one of Indonesia’s largest people-smuggling rings have moved their families to New Zealand.

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