How to Spot (and Avoid) Job Scams

September 4th, 2015

If you are actively seeking work, there’s a good chance that you may have come across job scams without even realizing it – until it’s too late and you’ve already sent off your personal information on your resume. Scammers are everywhere and they especially like to target job seekers because of certain vulnerability factors. They know that people will do just about anything to get a job, so they lay a careful trap to snare unsuspecting people.

Job scams are on the rise so you need to know what to look out for before you fall victim to one of these situations. Here’s how to spot and avoid job scams.

Watch for common job scam phrases

Ever heard of that saying, “If it’s too good to be true it probably is”? This is something you need to be mindful of as you search for work, especially online. Pay close attention to job advertisements that say things like:

  • No prior experience needed
  • Make money fast or get rich now
  • Work part time and make full-time earnings
  • Work at home or in your pajamas
  • Make a small investment in your future
  • Earn money while you sleep
  • Limited business opportunity

These are all phrases spotted in the worst job scams, so don’t fall for them! Think realistically and don’t dream about getting rich in any job. The only one getting rich are the scammers.

Never pay to work for anyone.

Another sure sign of a job scam is after you’ve answered a help-wanted advertisement, you receive a nice email asking you to pay a fee to access a job lead, freelance work, or other “guaranteed” sources of income. It is never a good idea to pay anyone else to work for them. Instead, hold onto your cash and avoid “opportunities” that ask for money upfront.

You get an email from a company you never applied to.

Every job seeker gets at least one or more of these types of emails, promising them a great job that they can work part time and get rich from. Or one with above-average earning potential. These often arrive shortly after posting a resume on one of the big name job boards. Mark them as spam and move on because 99 percent of them are scams trying to steal your personal information, also called “phishing.”

The job advertisement (or recruitment email) asks for too much information.

When reviewing job advertisements, pay particularly close attention to what they are asking for from candidates. If they ask applicants to send in personal information, like addresses, financial information, marital status, age, and things of this nature – run far away! You may also send in a resume that gets an email asking for this information, which you should report to your email provider and mark as spam.

Here are some helpful hints:

Only apply for jobs with companies in your area that have an actual professional website that lists company information and address, and a phone number. Check them out first by visiting the Better Business Bureau, and by Googling the company name and the word “scam” to see if there are any reports about them. Pick up the phone and ask for the HR person if in doubt. Be careful about sending out personal information, and leave your home address off the initial resume and cover letter you send out.

Why take chances? Instead of falling for a job scam, search for real jobs by registering with Synerfac Technical Staffing in NYC. You’ll work for a reputable company and real people who care about your success.

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