Beware of Seasonal Job Scams As the Winter Holidays Approach

holiday job scamsHoliday hiring is well underway, and jobseekers are facing substantial opportunities for employment in seasonal jobs this winter holiday season.  Retailers, package shipping companies and restaurants are in great need of seasonal help, and many of these companies are reputable and excellent places to work.  What isn’t positive news for seasonal jobseekers this winter are the job scams that lurking out there as well, looking to take advantage of vulnerable people in the midst of the holidays.

These scams disguise themselves as promising companies that want to hire you, but really they are looking to steal your personal information and take your money, instead of giving you the opportunity to supplement your income this holiday season.   They can appear as unsolicited emails from someone that found your resume online, or as postings on online job boards.  Here are some signs of possible seasonal job scams to watch out for this winter, so you don’t waste your time on these crooks and instead focus your energy on the legitimate jobs that truly need your skills:

1)  Requiring money up front.

Most legitimate companies won’t require any money from you to start a job.  Even more definite signals that you are being scammed are any mention of wire transfers, or purchasing pricey items that you will supposedly need for the job.

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2)  The pay is too good to be true.

Many seasonal jobs out there don’t require extensive experience or training, so if the pay being offered by a company seems too good to be true considering the difficulty of the job, do some investigating to make sure you are not being victimized by a holiday job scam culprit.

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3)  Asking for personal information too early in the hiring process.

Never provide info such as your social security number, address, bank account details or birth date until you are well into the hiring process and are absolutely sure the company is credible.

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4)  It’s hard to find detailed information about the company.

If you don’t find much information when doing a Google search of the company, such as a legitimate website and company location, that is a red flag you could be walking into a holiday job scam trap.  Also, if the company is hesitant to provide more details or provide references when you ask, move on.

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5)  You feel pressured to accept the job immediately.

Even with winter seasonal jobs, you should definitely be given the opportunity to give the offer a little thought.  If a company is trying to get you to say yes right on the spot, especially without an interview or even meeting you in person, it’s a sign they don’t want you to have much time to think about it because you will realize it isn’t legitimate.

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6)  Watch out for certain job titles.

Scammers tend to target job titles on online job boards that a large amount of people are looking for and able to perform, such as customer service representative, secret shopper, or data entry.  Many of these postings for these job titles are legitimate, but the scams that do exist on online job boards are more likely to be posted under these titles, so just be wary.

Winter Seasonal Jobs Present Full-Time Opportunities for Jobseekers

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Jessica Cody

Jessica Cody, a native of Fairfield County, Connecticut, has a background in online marketing and public relations. She is a graduate of the University of Connecticut, where she studied Journalism and Political Science. She is also an avid runner with a passion for the outdoors.

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