Internet safety

Your guide to staying safe online

In our modern world internet safety is of utmost importance. Please rest assured that Au Pair in America values your privacy and prioritizes the security of your personal information. Unfortunately internet scams and online fraud do exist. We've all received emails from people claiming to be a bank or telling us we have won an incredible prize. Some scammers take it a step further and these are the ones you need to be really aware of.

A scammer could pose as an au pair organization or host family and attempt to gain your trust via email. They will then ask you to wire them money in some way, for example using Western Union or Money Gram. Do not fall for this! Never send personal details (like passport or bank information) or agree to wire or transfer money in any way. It is always a scam! No reputable business or organization will ever ask you for personal details, or to wire/transfer money over the Internet.

Recognize a scam check list

  • Receiving badly/oddly written emails from an unknown source
  • Being offered a prize or deal, which sounds far too good to be true!
  • You are unable to reach this person/people by phone
  • Odd/suspicious email addresses
  • Demanding/urgent/aggressive emails that request an immediate response from you
  • Requests for personal information (passport details)
  • Requests for money via Western Union, Money Gram, money orders, cashier's checks

Be Scam Savvy!

Stay safe online – don't be fooled by scammers

Important Information

Au pairs must apply with a US Department of State designated sponsor in order to travel legally on a J1 Visa to the US as an au pair. Au Pair in America is a division of the American Institute for Foreign Study and was the first organization to be designated as an J-1 visa sponsor for au pairs to America.

If you are contacted by a supposed host family or agency do not follow any links or email addresses they provide unless you are sure they are a legitimate family/agency. Only once you have been accepted onto the Au Pair in America program as a suitable au pair candidate will you start to hear from host families. Never before! Au Pair in America applicants do not pay any money directly to their host family as part of the application process.

We never send out applications via email or post, our application process is conducted online through our secure, password-protected participant site. Before you attend an informal interview you will have to complete a detailed application.

Au Pair in America is a legitimate sponsor and as per US law will have representatives in your country to meet you in person to conduct the informal interview. In person means the interview will never be conducted over email or phone/ Skype. It will usually be at the office of the agency in your country.

Au Pair Matching Sites

If you post your au pair profile on a public au pair matching site please make sure that you read the scam prevention information carefully. Again, never send personal information or agree to transfer or wire money to people you meet on public matching sites.

Au Pair in America Payment Methods

Au Pairs please note! You will only be invoiced for your Au Pair in America Program Fee once you have placed with one of our carefully selected Host Families. The Program Fee will be paid through your secure password-protected Au Pair in America participant site. You will never be asked to pay it any other way. Neither Au Pair in America nor any of its registered US Host families will ever ask for money to be sent or wired via Western Union, Money Gram, cashier's checks or money orders.

What should you do?

If you think you are being targeted by a scammer claiming to be an Au Pair in America staff member or host family, or if you are just concerned about the authenticity of an email, phone call or message, please email us at or call us on +44 207 581 7322. You could also run searches on any suspicious email addresses on the internet to see if they have already been reported. If in doubt check it out!