No. Interac does not hire transfer agents. There have been instances of employment recruitment scams in which Canadian job hunters are hired as agents for "foreign companies". In fact, the job hunters may actually end up being used as "mules" to transfer stolen funds outside of Canada. Anyone who participates, even unknowingly, could be deemed an accomplice to a crime and may be prosecuted. We urge you to fully investigate any such job offers.
In the typical scenario, the "employer", very often a foreign-based company, poses as a legitimate company looking on job recruitment websites for an agent to represent the company in Canada. The job is to accept payments from Canadian customers on behalf of the foreign company, and then transfer a portion of the proceeds offshore. The employer indicates that a key qualification for the position is that employees must be online banking customers, able to receive funds electronically, using Interac e-Transfer.
Once the employee receives the funds in his/her account, he/she is given instructions to transfer the money via a funds wire transfer service to a foreign address. As compensation, the employee or "transfer agent" is paid a percentage of the funds received and transferred. This is often a front for an illegal operation and the unwitting employee may be prosecuted for his or her part in this scheme.
In order to appear authentic, fraudsters may present employment agreements, websites and other types of information, for example, a detailed contract, outline of employee job responsibilities, compensation, etc. While, these websites and employment agreements may present an appearance of legitimacy, spelling errors or the use of odd wording may be a sign that the operation is not a legitimate one.
Tips to Protect Yourself
Offers of easy money are often too good to be true. A web-based job that requires you to move funds outside Canada could be a front for an illegal operation. While the opportunity may look appealing, you may end up being subject to criminal prosecution for your role in the operation.
Check any employment-related information for unusual phrasing and look for misspelled words. If you are suspicious, check with local law enforcement.
Stay aware by checking the following sources of information about fraud:
Phishing is a scam where fraudsters attempt to acquire personal and/or financial information, such as passwords, card numbers, etc., by masquerading as a trustworthy person or business through electronic communications. Phishing is typically carried out using email or an instant message, although phone contact has been used as well.
In some instances, the fraudster sends authentic-looking emails or text messages (smishing) that appear to come from legitimate companies, requesting recipients to disclose personal and/or financial information that is later used to commit fraud.
Be suspicious if you receive a notice for an Interac e-Transfer that you were not expecting. If in doubt, contact the sender to ensure he or she has initiated your transfer.
Interac e-Transfer is one of the safest digital money transfer services in the world. When you send money using Interac e-Transfer, the money is transferred using established and secure banking procedures that financial institutions have used for years to settle cheques, bank machine deposits and withdrawals. Money never travels by email or text - these are simply used to notify you that money was sent or requested, as well as provide instructions to deposit.