First year students warned after adverts posted in messaging groups asking for ‘female only’ personal assistant and model jobs

First year students in Trinity College Dublin have been warned to be vigilant after two adverts were posted in messaging groups for a “fe...



First year students in Trinity College Dublin have been warned to be vigilant after two adverts were posted in messaging groups for a “female only” personal assistant and a model.

n initial advert looking for an assistant sent alarm bells ringing with the Trinity College Dublin Students’ Union after a student got in touch to say they had seen it in a Whatsapp group for Trinity Halls students, the first year on campus accommodation.

“Initially it was one person and it was an isolated incident we suspected of just kind of an unusual advertisement in one of the fresher’s Whatsapp group chats,” said Leah Keogh, the TCD SU Welfare Officer.

A part of the advert read: “Looking for person who can become Irish Trinity Model in Dublin. Hourly €35, if you can’t join, leave gc” [sic].

“The advertisement was a PA role of sorts, €35 an hour to proof read.

“What got the alarm bells ringing was that it was females only,” she told the Irish Independent.

Ms Keogh then got in touch with the university’s community garda, however, the situation escalated further when a second advert began to circulate.

“This time, the advertisement was slightly changed. We had a look at the phone numbers and they all link back to the same phone number.

“The advertisement was now for a Trinity model, €35 an hour again. This time, the person was impersonating people in the group chats and the spread had widened.”

The second advert read: “I am looking for a person who help my work until December. Hourly €35 – Such as proofreading, create slides, making invitations on Facebook. Only females! Dm me”

The person posting the adverts had infiltrated the messaging group through using the names and profile photos of the other students in the group.

“They were impersonating people in the group chat, using their names and using their profile pictures. Obviously, this was causing students great distress.

“They were using their information on their account so they wouldn’t be removed,” Ms Keogh explained.

The union advised the messaging group admins to tighten their security by way of asking new members to submit their student numbers or college email addresses.

The University Times, the TCD student newspaper, reported that the union was asking students to remain vigilant.

“I don’t think it’s as sinister as it appears but I do think that it is important to take necessary precautions to ensure the utmost safety of our students.

“This is the first time that anything like this has come to my attention, I think it’s so important that we’re being vigilant online now more than ever now that were encouraging students to study online,” Ms Keogh added.

A statement from An Garda Siochana said that no formal report has been made.

“Community Gardaí regularly liaise with Student Unions and offer crime prevention advice.

“No formal complaint has been made to An Garda Síochána in relation to this matter at this time,” it added.

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Newsrust: First year students warned after adverts posted in messaging groups asking for ‘female only’ personal assistant and model jobs
First year students warned after adverts posted in messaging groups asking for ‘female only’ personal assistant and model jobs
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