Job Scams: Easy Tips to Avoid Falling Prey
Job seekers: beware fake job scams.
Job listing scams have actually existed for a long time, per the FBI. However, the technology now being used by scammers along with their increased skill level are making the scam listings much more believable.
And it’s showing up more frequently.
The FBI recently released a Public Service Announcement to warn job seekers of this menace.
So, what’s the threat?
Cyber criminals are using fake job listings to ensnare job applicants. Once they have gotten an applicant in the “review process,” they will gradually begin attempting to obtain sensitive personal information and financial account credentials. They oftentimes even ask the for “start-up” funds to get initial equipment needed for the “job.”
And of course, once the criminals get what they seek, they’ll simply disappear and no longer respond to emails or other communication from the hapless victims.
Read the full FBI announcement here.
Tips to avoid job scams
- Conduct some web research on a company you’re interested in. Cross-reference phone numbers, email addresses, and other details in the listing with what’s on the web. If the employer has posted jobs through their website, check and see if there’s a listing there that corresponds with the one you found on the job board.
- Be careful when asked to conduct an interview via teleconference applications that use email addresses instead of phone numbers.
- Be wary of companies that ask for bank information prior to you being hired. Do not send money or conduct wire transfers to these.
- Do not proceed with an application process if you need to purchase start-up equipment prior to being employed.
- Never provide personal credit card information to an employer.
- Guard your social security number and personally identifiable information. This type of information, along with your bank details, is safer to provide to a company in-person rather than electronically through email, text, or a web form.
Protect yourself from job scammers
“Vigilance and common sense can be powerful allies in combating internet scams,” said Brian Walker. “When something doesn’t sound right, don’t rush to action. Instead, take a moment to process things.
“Scammers tend to phrase things to elicit a rushed response. Don’t fall into their trap.”
“Cyber scammers are opportunistic,” added Aaron Allen. “They’ll use holidays and important occasions to their advantage. They thrive in busy times of the year, where people may be a bit stressed and may possibly have their guard lowered.
“A healthy skepticism coupled with an awareness of the types of threats out there can help you stay safe. Contact Thrive today.”