There is this group of scam artists who has now appeared to have set their sights on veterans and many of whom may already suffer from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), have found that they were subjected to contaminated drinking water on the U. S. Bases on which they were assigned, currently fighting with the V. A. regarding disability, education and other benefits of which they earned and convincing an employer that they are hirable thereby living day to day unemployed.  For some reason, these crooks think this is a target enriched environment from which to operate but what they may not have counted on is veterans are much similar to a bunch of snakes, you mess with us and we bite back.

Image coming home after serving your country in uniform and after being promised so much not being able to get any of those promises answered because while you were busy defending their freedom, some were changing the rules and policies which now deny you those promises.  But before you can even get your head wrapped around that, some people contact you, tell you that they got your information and resume from a V.A. website, you thought was secure and offer you a job.  Many veterans think, okay, now that I can get a job, I can let this fight with those withholding my benefits go and finally get back to re-capturing my dignity, my honor, my family.  Only to find a few weeks later, that this too is a lie and another stain on your good name.  What you thought was an enemy list of a few, has now just doubled without any help from you.

The group that came for me, pretended to be a group called TDX looking for an independent contractor for data entry and an Administrative Assistant.  While I have never liked being anyone “pool boy”, I have not be able to get employment since 2009 and desperately wanted a reason to get up in the mornings.  I received an employment letter from them which made me feel a little bit better about the possibilities and even a detailed job description.  I passed the interview and started the training, since the training was something new; I embraced it like I had never embraced anything before.  I wanted to learn as much and as quickly as I could about this job and as many veterans will tell you, when we commit we commit and no one will outshine us at anything. I was about to finally begin to rebuild myself, my relationships and my life or so I thought.

The issue came after I was supposed to submit a W9 and direct deposit information as well as fill out a more detail application for this job.  As the end to week one of training closed in, my trainer asked me for my time sheet and sent me a bogus check to purchase equipment that I would need in the coming week along with including my pay for that week.  Because I could not shake the feeling that something was just not right, I expressed my concerns to my bank, which in turn set up defenses so that I could protect myself on that front.  I contacted a few credit bureaus and placed a 90-day watch on my credit after explaining to them what I think might be happening and they did this completely for free.  I contacted the banking institution on which the check was drawn and they too were happy to help try and protect my name and my reputation and finally I contacted the Cyber Crimes Division of the U. S. Government.  These are the steps that I recommend to all those veterans who finally find that job but something doesn’t feel right about it.  Protect yourself, your family and your name because as long as we wait for others to protect us as we protected them, our wait will never end.  The only thing that I can say to these cowards is when you see a 5 feet 6 inch black man coming towards you, say Hi to me please.


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