Some people profit on the misfortune of others. This especially holds true for jobseekers. Sometimes finding a job can turn into a long, drawn out process. But the bills need to get paid somehow, so there is usually a heavy urgency to start work immediately. Scammers know this, and create intricate schemes to gather personal and financial information. Jobseekers need to keep their head on a swivel when navigating through potential opportunities or they might fall victim to one of these bozos.
When you are on the hunt for employment, keep an eye out for these “red flags” that usually indicate a sketchy and dishonest job posting.
Job Scam Red Flags
Asks for PayPal, Bank Account, Credit Card etc.
There is no legitimate job that would ever ask for your personal financial information. It goes without saying that if you give this information away during the job hunting process it won’t end well. This is one of the quickest paths to financial ruin, but it happens to a lot of people. Don’t make that mistake.
Personal Assistant, Mystery Shopper, Personal Shopper
One popular scam is to post jobs under the above keywords all around the internet. But, they are more popular on Craigslist than anywhere else. These jobs are always too good to be true, which is usually a great indicator that they aren’t real. They promise grandiose salaries and excellent bonuses, but it’s all a lie. They also include a form to fish for your address and other contact information, and if you fill it out you receive a cashier’s check in the mail a few weeks later with instructions to cash it and send a portion of the money back via Western Union. The checks look good to the bank, but after a few days it will ping as fraudulent. And guess who’s on the hook? You! Not only could you potentially see jail time for bank fraud, but you also just sent your own cash via Western Union, which is non-refundable. Bummer dude!
Research Your Potential Employer
It’s always a wise idea to research the company you are interested in working for. Find the website, or any other relevant information on the internet. If the company is legitimate, this should not be hard to find. But if it’s a scam, there should be some obvious signs. If the website looks rough and you can’t find any relevant information about the company, it’s probably too good to be true. Take a closer look. What kind of information are they collecting? Bank account? Social Security? Starting to make sense now?
A typo or two is usually not a cause for concern. But if you read through a job posting or an email from a potential employer, pay attention to the grammar. If there are a lot of spelling mistakes, misplaced words, or writing which indicates the author is overseas you should be careful. Most of these scammers operate overseas, and it make it almost impossible to catch them. But, they usually can’t create a coherent sentence.
If you’ve been getting emails from a scammer, just put them into your trash folder and keep looking for work. Always be aware and protect your personal information. If it ends up in the wrong hands it could be bad news.