08/16/2023: Recruiter Scams Rising with Online Job Sites

With sites like LinkedIn and Indeed, applying for jobs online has become incredibly popular. You can submit your application online to jobs that are fit for you, making a normally more stressful task more convenient.

Of course, this leaves many opportunities for scammers to take advantage.

Impersonating Reputable Companies:

Job recruitment scams have become increasingly more common as digital job applications have taken over. Scammers impersonate well-known and trusted companies, with hopes that you will stumble across their fake job application.

Would you hesitate to apply if you found a dream job application for your favorite company or brand? This is what scammers are depending on. The bigger and more well-known brand, the more likely you would be to trust it and fall victim.

Identifying Fake Job Listings:

As per the FTC, “It begins with a personal message on a job hunting platform such as Indeed or LinkedIn. The so-called “recruiter” claims that your skills are precisely what they need.”

Common red flags for these scams are:

  • Emails from a free account like Gmail or Yahoo instead of a company email.
  • Job offers without much inquiry about skills and experience.
  • Pushing for you to give them money or unnecessary personal information.
  • Recruiters are vague when asked about the job.

How Scammers Operate:

Once you show interest in one of these fake jobs, they will often email you with information for an online interview. They often use messaging apps or email to interview you and get your personal information. They may offer you the job without asking questions and then pressure you to give them money or personal information.

Protecting Yourself from Fake Job Scams:

Check these guidelines from the Federal Trade Commission before accepting a job offer.

  • Search online: Look up the company or the person hiring. Check if anyone is making complaints or saying unsavory things about them.
  • Look up Employees: Check out the employees on LinkedIn and their connections.
  • Talk to someone you trust: Tell them about the offer. What do they think about it? This gives you another opinion and time to think the offer over.
  • Do not pay a recruiter for a job they promised you. Real employers, even the government, won’t ask you to pay to start a job.
  • Don’t trust anyone who sends you a check and then asks you to send them money or buy gift cards. Real employers never do this.

What to Do If You Encounter a Scam:

If you or someone you know encounters a recruiter scam, please inform the Federal Trade Commission.

Report fraud to the FTC by filling out this report at reportfraud.ftc.gov.

By sharing your experience, you can help someone else avoid falling victim to the same scam.

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