Increased compensation? Exceptional benefits and bonuses? And working fewer hours? Sounds like the perfect job, especially during trying times. Before you get your hopes high and start clicking ‘apply’, take a step back and identify if this is a real opportunity.
Job scams have been on the rise this year. Scammers are leveraging the unemployed with a promise for a better tomorrow. Many have faced serious issues and have been forced to work for excessive hours due to employment fraud. However, this can be avoided if you take the time to do due diligence.
What is a job scam (employment fraud)?
A job scam is an attempt to defraud people who are seeking employment by providing ‘too good to be true job offers, usually portrayed through fewer working hours, and easy-to-do tasks with attractive wages. In addition, they are often paired with a payment request for applications disguised as a requirement to secure interviews or for work visas and travel expenses.
Victims commonly receive non-existing job offers through unsolicited text messages or messages from social media platforms and chats, such as Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp, Telegram and WeChat.
How to avoid job scams?
Ask questions, and take that call!
A quick call to the recruiter will give you a good grasp of whether the job is a scam or not. A real job would have sufficient details about the job description, the company and the offer package. The less information provided, the less likely that it’s a real job!
Before getting into any business, it is always wise to do some research. Learn about the company, the position and the recruitment agent. Do a quick search on the internet and check if the position is legitimate through credible web portals such as the official company website and LinkedIn. You can also connect with the recruiter or hiring managers via LinkedIn for a quick reference check.
Make your messaging platforms private
Take some time to set your ‘security & privacy' setting in your messaging platforms to private. Avoid sharing your contact numbers and personal information on platforms such as Telegram, Facebook or Instagram.
Avoid making payments
There is no such thing as making a payment to secure an interview. Companies would not ask candidates to make advanced payments to set up any form of interviews. Should you be asked to make payment for any visa or travel expenses, it is important to cross-check the bank details. Payment is a huge red flag as it is not at all common in recruitment practices. Please be aware!
Think before you click!
Avoid clicking random links or unsolicited URLs which may cause suspicion. Job scammers have many ways to extract your personal information, some of the examples include clicking random links or downloading an application.
Despite the stories about employment fraud victims, you should not stop looking for a better opportunity. However, it is important to take a few cautious steps before applying for that dream job.
Should you be exposed to job scams or fake job advertisements via social media or messaging platforms, we advise that you file an official report to your nearest local authorities immediately. Together, we can avoid this from spreading and from other people becoming victims. Read more about how you can spot signs of fake job scams