Mar 6, 2024

Avoiding Fraudsters: Job Scams

Avoiding Fraudsters: Job Scams - scammer with workers

Unfortunately, scams happen every single day in all walks of life across the globe. Scams can occur in many ways, from scammers obtaining personal bank details to making fraudulent phone calls, emails, or letters, with the intent of stealing something from the targeted individual, and that’s usually our hard-earned money.

It’s common for scams to mention a problem or to insist that there is a prize at stake if you agree to whatever mock-scenario the scammer has made up—and to make it time-sensitive—so you  must make a rushed decision without considering whether it’s a legitimate offer.

While it can be easy to detect a scam in some cases, there are also more and more ways that fraudsters are targeting members of the public— and in more elaborate ways, too.

The job market isn’t safe from scammers, either.

One such way is through the promise of jobs, with criminals preying on those hopeful of securing employment to scam them out of money.

Scammers Targeting Graduates

The current job market is awash with recent graduates, fresh out of college and searching for their dream graduate job. While it’s an exciting time, it can be a nervous time, too, with the pressures of the current market playing on a lot of young professionals’ minds.

Unfortunately, not every job post or recruitment agency is legitimate, and hopeful applicants need to stay vigilant in knowing how to spot a scam.

The FTC has received reports about a scam that starts with a job recruiter reaching out to ask for an applicant’s resume, which is pretty standard practice in the job hunting world and why it’s so difficult to recognize it as a potential scam.

After the applicant sends through their resume, they are told that the format of the document they have sent is “incompatible.” The scammer then instructs the applicant to upload their resume to a website to “reformat” the document for a fee.

In other words, they’re asking for an applicant to pay for a job. In many cases, a job that might not even exist.

How to Spot a Scam

The bottom line of spotting a scam is this: don’t pay for something if you’re not 100% certain of its legitimacy. Especially for things such as job applications!

You should never be made to part with any money when looking for a job, and if you’re uncertain of a job posting’s legitimacy, there are certain things you can do to double-check whether or not the post you’ve applied for is legitimate:

  • Conduct some research - Search online for the company that you’ve applied for a job with or for the person you’ve been in touch with that’s directing you towards a paid service. There’ll be plenty of information online if they are indeed real.
  • Search for scams - You can also combine the name of the business/person with “scam,” “fraud,” “complaint” or “review” in your online search to see if anyone else has reported a similar issue.
  • Seek advice - Talk to someone you trust or a legitimate employment agency that you know is the real deal. The right people will give you the right advice.
  • Don’t rush - Don’t be hasty in making decisions, even if you’re eager to land a job fresh out of college. If anything, you should take more time to make sure the opportunity is the right one for you.

Another thing to look out for with potential scams is how the person you’re in contact with is behaving. If they’re rushing you to make a payment or decision quickly or threatening you that you won’t be considered for the job, you’re better off steering well clear.

What if I’m Targeted by a Scam?

If you think you’ve been the victim of a scam or targeted by scammers but didn’t fall for it, it’s important to take action to ensure that the same thing doesn’t happen to other people.

Reporting the incident immediately is the best course of action to take. Even if you detected something wasn’t right and avoided becoming a victim, the next person targeted might not be so lucky.

Options for reporting your potential scam include your local law enforcement, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, or the Federal Trade Commission. These will be able to undertake a full investigation to discover who the perpetrator is and prevent them from scamming people in the future.

Legitimate jobs, even from the government, would never ask you to pay money upfront at any stage of your application process. Anyone who does is a scammer.

Contact Our Specialists at Morgan & Morgan Today

Have you been a victim of a scam that has left you out of pocket? We recognize the severe consequences this can have on every aspect of your life, from your finances to your mental wellbeing.

Our Morgan & Morgan attorneys have decades of collective experience and expertise in handling such scammers, and we’re ready to fight in your corner to reobtain your stolen money.

Contact us today for a free, no-obligation case evaluation so we can get you started.