When looking for a job online, you can’t always tell the difference between a truthful posting and a deceitful one.
Job scammers have become more skilled in their approach, and job seekers – especially those experiencing unemployment – are vulnerable to their tactics.
A Fargo woman is warning others about job scams after falling victim to one.
In a recent VKX4 News Live article and video by Ashley Bishop, Cynthia Bord thought she landed a great, flexible job working from home. She applied and interviewed online for the position – and received a job offer.
“Oh, you’re hired and this is what you will be doing and at that point he hadn’t asked for any money and I was very excited.” – Cynthia Bord, Valley News Live
She was relieved as she thought her job search was over. But after receiving a red flag – in the form of a software payment request – the day after being hired and inquiring about it, she found out:
“The emails and interview were fake.”
From there, she realized she’d fallen prey to a job scam.
The results of a FlexJobs survey show:
- “17 percent of job seekers have reported being a victim of job scam at least once.”
- “33 percent of respondents stated that they were “very concerned” about job scams during their search.”
- “48 percent of respondents stated that they were “on guard” during their job search.”
Tips for Avoiding Online Job Scams
For those “on guard” and concerned, you have every right to be.
In the Valley Live News article, the Better Business Bureau suggests several tips for protecting yourself. A few suggestions are:
- “Research the company offering the job. Go to bbb.org to obtain a report, call the company, or Google it. Many times, if the offer is a scam, you will be able to figure it out through one of these three steps. If you are seeing the offer on Facebook or Craigslist, also go to the company’s website to see if the company exists and what they do.”
- “Remember, you should never, ever, have to pay someone for employment. That’s how the scammers make their money.”
- “Never give your Social Security number to someone you don’t know or have not researched. Guard your resume! Resumes often contain personal information, ripe for identity thieves.”
So, I’d say: When applying for jobs online, use caution because many scammers disguise well. Evaluate all postings thoroughly before submitting your information. And remember the old adage when evaluating them: “if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.”
If you’ve fallen victim (or think you’ve fallen victim) to one of these scams, then please report it immediately to the Better Business Bureau and the Federal Trade Commission’s Complaint Division.
For more, you can check out the video below or by clicking the article link above.
Additional Resources on Online Job Scams
To learn more about online scams in the job search process, you can read the following resources:
Fact Sheet 25a: Avoiding Online Job Scams by Privacy Rights Clearinghouse on PrivacyRights.org
Job Scams by the Federal Trade Commission on Consumer.FTC.Gov
Disclaimer: This post contains outgoing links to the work of others on the following websites: Valley News Live, Privacy Rights Clearinghouse, and the Federal Trade Commission.
P. S. What steps have you taken to avoid online job scams? Please share with others by leaving a comment!