"CHINA WANTS YOU FOR MANY INTERESTING INTERNSHIPS!"
This group gets the 2015 China Creative Scam Award for the most creative and deceptive fraud online today. They really went through a lot of effort to make their "China Internship" and "China Back Door Job" program very alluring. This is a 5 star scam folks so spread the word before some university grad you know does not swallow the appetizing bait next. I am not the first to stumble upon this scheme but I am so impressed with it, I have to add my two cents...
First, the web site htp://gi2c.org went on line less than 2 years ago and it is a gem for sure. Very colorful and appealing and just full of video testimonials, links to reviews and all their blogs and happy shill customers. But the ".org" is a lie in itself. This is not an organization, nor an NPO, nor and NGO. According to the leasing offices at the Galaxy Soho, the company is a "commercial enterprise" with the name of "Getin2China" which if you Google, will see they have been peddling illegal visas in years past. The company is owned by a Russian name Yuri Khlystov and a Chinese partner only known as Ben Tsao. They previously operated their black visa business from an office in Dongzhimen according to former Chinese employee "Hellen" who claims she was a "customer service manager" but left when the company "started doing really risky visa stuff" (i.e. selling visas to Russian prostitutes). BTW... here is a photo of the owners (Hellen said she took this photo). The "WhoIs" website registration info is found at the bottom of this post that confirms the ownership. The owners are the first two from the left in the second row.
Here is a photo of where the boiler room is now located - in the D2 Tower of the Galaxy Soho building in suite no. 50927 (9th Floor) where approximately 20 people are employed in this office, but the inside source says the faces are constantly changing.
This link The Gi2C Team - Gi2C Staff - Getin2China and the next post identifies the telemarketing and administrative staff. You will note that some employees do not use their real names and one girl uses two names (Mary & Merry) and has two different photos. Why she pretends to be two different people is not yet known. There are also people who answer the phone and use names that the management says "no longer work here" even though their names and images are still being used on the website and various ads. These names include Paul, Joe, Jane, Zach, Max, Jean, Thomas, Priti, Andrew, Abbie, Johnathan, Tommy, Cheryl, etc. Some rumors say these people were arrested and others that they "resigned". We know for sure that "Tommy" pictured below was arrested and sent to prison for selling illegal visas in 2013. Although management says Tommy was not an employee, I called their office two weeks ago and when I asked for "Tommy" in Chinese, I was told "he is out doing an errand and gone for the day" I was advised to call back the next day! When I called back the next day for Tommy, I was told there was "nobody in the company by that name"! Here is a photo of convicted felon "Tommy"
Now here is another photo on the Gi2C.org web site that has absolutely nothing to do with the company and I hereby challenge Mr. Yuri to explain why they claim to be "partners" with SMU when they have no knowledge of your company sir and are amazed you put one of their photos from their old website on your website!
The next curious thing is that on the homepage of Gi2C, they present that they have offices "world-wide" with all these offices in New York, London, Los Angeles, Canada, etc. They put up the phone numbers of all their "overseas operations" as you can see below. But when I did a reverse look up on these numbers, only the Beijing number is NOT a "virtual number" - a number that you lease from RingCentral.com for $49 a month. There are no overseas offices. These telephone numbers exist only in Cyberspace and are forwarded to 86-010-5288-9011 in Beijing or to mobile numbers of sales people after hours. They do have an apartment rented in Shanghai used as a sales office as well, but their Shanghai manager "Jane" recently resigned and would not say why.
Los Angeles: +1 213 5597277 New York: +1 917 5039747 Canada: +1 888 7899596
London: +44 203 6087372 Helsinki: +358 9 42450737 Tokyo: +81 3 45798488
Beijing: +86 10 52889011 Shanghai: +86 21 60542444
The scam itself is three-fold... First there is a grab for your "100% Refundable Deposit" which is usually $300 but can be as much as $999 if you are super gullible. This deposit, you are told "is to hold you highly coveted internship slot - so nobody else can get it." In reality, this deposit is what make up 50% of their income and keep the rent paid. According to a former employee, over $50,000 in deposits are taken in every week - and the only a handful of people out of over 3,000 ever got a deposit refunded, and those are the people who either came their with the police, posted complaints at Weibo, or made daily complaints on their Facebook page.
The second part of the scam is that customers are not told the total costs of the program until after the deposit is made. That is when they find out that their internship comes with a huge price tag that after 90 days will be in the neighborhood of $8,000!!! Aside from their $3,700 fee the customer must also buy round-trip plane tickets, pay for two months apartment rental + one month security deposit, meals for 90 days, and subway transit costs to and from their work assignment. Gi2C will supply a furnish room in a shared apartment for the first 30 days but it is nothing special and you do not get to pick your roommates, some of which have pets.
The third part of the scam is that customers are misled to believe they will intern with some huge international company and "probably" get a job offer at the end of their internship. Jobs seldom materialize (less than 5% of their internships end with job offers says the former employee). But the quality of the internships themselves are usually a big let down and interns often get placed with different companies than they were promised and only find out after they arrive in Beijing. Gi2c interns spend most of their time making coffee, deliveries, sales calls, copies, or used as mall monkeys to pass out advertising materials to people who pass by. They already have your money at this point and there is not much you can do. In fact, the former snitch employee says that about half of Gi2C interns abandon their internships within two weeks and become tourists or English tutors rather than endure the exploitation at the companies they are assigned. There are few happy exceptions. These people are SOME of the ones who make the video testimonials, but most are local actors paid $500 for their performance.
There is also something that is outright criminal here. The customers are told not to mention they are going to work as interns when they apply for their visas. They are instructed to lie to the Visa officers at the consulates and request an "M" visa saying they are going to China to participate in some art festival, museum workshop, or Chinese culture exchange program. In fact, some of their interns were arrested and deported when caught working without the correct visa.
Now then, if you look at the internships offered by Gi2C.org on their web site, you will see that they never change. It is he same internships and frankly, their former webmaster, a nice fellow from the UK admitted that he also quit because "80% of those internship jobs were fabricated by Yuri and Zach" A Global Times Newspaper article boasts about "Wall Street Companies" that sponsor their finance interns, but when you ask their sales people to name these companies they quickly change the subject. Most all the Gi2C internship placements are with companies you never heard of.
But here is the kicker... The real legitimate internships available in China, the ones that actually lead to job offers, are offered for FREE by real international companies like Intel, Huawei, Panasonic, HP, Deloitte, etc. and you only need to email the HR staff for details and an application. Of course, you will still have to pay your own air fare, but if you get hired that air fare will be reimbursed. See: http://chinainternshipreviews.wordpress.com for the best rated real internships. In any overseas programs, you always expect a few people to complain. But in the case of Gi2c, the majority complains, and Steve admitted that the company daily has a full time hacker monitoring the internet to find and delete negative comments. Just watch their Facebook page for any 10 day period and you will see just how quickly complaints are zapped.
Last but not least there are legal issues to take into account. Although Gi2c tries to sell 6 month internships to Eastern Europeans, Arabs and Pakistanis, who just want entry visas into China, the Chinese law specifically states "No internship can exceed 90 consecutive days". Also, Chinese law now prohibits unpaid internships unless the intern is enrolled in a university exchange program hat requires a foreign internship. In all other cases, interns must be paid a minimum monthly stipend of 2,000 rmb. We can go on here with more lies found on the Gi2C website, but they changed their terms and conditions three times in the last year. If you want to meet the insider (former employee) just visit here: http://scam-detector.com/forums/forum/employment-scams/366-gi2c-org-and-other-china-internship-scams-exposed-by-former-u-k-employee
Here is the former logo of the company which changed its name after the police problems with Tommy:
If you want to waste your time and money and enjoy talking to friendly people on the phone, Gi2C is for you. Otherwise steer clear and find yourself a real China job internship for free mates.
gi2c.org Internet Registry whois:
Updated 10 days ago - Refresh
Domain ID: D168532339-LROR
Creation Date: 2013-04-25T07:45:45Z
Updated Date: 2015-02-23T12:15:02Z
Registry Expiry Date: 2016-04-25T07:45:45Z
Sponsoring Registrar:Tucows Inc. (R11-LROR)
Sponsoring Registrar IANA ID: 69
Domain Status: ok -- http://www.icann.org/epp#ok
Registrant Name:Yuri Khlystov
Registrant Street: Unit 50927, 9th Floor, Building D2, Galaxy SOHO
Registrant Postal Code:100010
Registrant Phone Ext:
Registrant Fax Ext:
Admin Name:Yuri Khlystov
Admin Street: Unit 50927, 9th Floor, Building D2, Galaxy SOHO
Admin Postal Code:100010
Admin Phone Ext:
Admin Fax Ext:
Tech Name:Yuri Khlystov
Tech Street: Unit 50927, 9th Floor, Building D2, Galaxy SOHO
Tech Postal Code:100010
Tech Phone Ext:
Tech Fax Ext: