Recognizing Fake Jobs and How to Avoid Them

Wherever there are people looking for something, unfortunately there are also scammers looking to bait them with promises.  In today’s economic climate many people are looking for jobs.  People who have no job security or have been out of work are desperate for the next big thing.  Sadly, the next big thing for scammers is job scams.  The first step is avoiding job scams is simply to be aware of how prevalent they are.

Job scam statistics:

According to a recent AOL survey…

One out of every 33 people looking for a job has reported being a victim of a job scam.

One out of 9 people admit to knowing someone who has been scammed by a fake job opportunity.

Sure there are job scams looking for “movie extras” and Mystery Shopper job scams and fake modeling agency Facebook scams but there are many more job scams that target real job searchers desperate for work.

Bethany Mooradian, author of ‘I Got Scammed So You Don’t Have To” has fallen for more than one job scam over the years from the “stuff envelopes from home” scam which ask her to run an add to get others to pay up the $19.95 to find out more about envelope stuffing jobs paying $75.00 to cover her background check to home caretaker.

In the past college students and stay at home moms were the most likely targets of job scams but with so many job seekers out of work today, the job scams have evolved into an huge job scam industry.

Why are job seekers big targets for scams?

1) Today there are so many people who are unemployed, without job security or needing a second to make ends meet, that the market is simply ripe for job scammers. It’s often a numbers game and scammers target huge markets like the elderly or in this case job hunters.

2) We have notion that nothing is free in our society.  In most cases this is true, like it’s doubtful that you’ve won a lottery that you didn’t even enter but when it comes to job hunting, legit companies aren’t requiring you to pay to apply.

3) The third reason job seekers are targets is simply because so many are looking for jobs online and the Internet makes it so easy to scam to job hunters.  People looking to scam you on the Internet can hide behind a website and lull you or link you into giving out information to a “virtual” stranger that you would never give to a stranger in person.

How to Avoid Job Scams:

Only use well known career websites but Jeremy Miller, Kroll Fraud Solutions director of operations warns that even credible career search websites can’t control what happens to your resume after it has been downloaded.

It can be tricky but there are some sure signs to help you avoid job scams:

Fake jobs ads often offer:

Big pay with little duties.

Payment in cash.

Signs of bogus jobs include:

No physical address.

No specific contact person.

Big red flags for job scams:

Asking you to open a bank account.

Asking for payment for job training, background searches, memberships and so on.

It’s important to report job scam, or any type of fraud.  Many victims are too embarrassed to report the crime but reporting the crime matters and sometimes restitution is available.

Have you been a victim of a job scam? Share your experiences in our comment section.