Jobseekers looking online for employment opportunities need to be on the lookout for scams, warns Bronwyn Johnson, head of marketing at Kalahari Ads.
“Job scams have been around as long as jobs themselves, but the advent of the internet has made it much easier and less risky for criminals to practice employment fraud – so job seekers need to be aware of what to look out for,” she says.
“There are two main types of scams that may have an impact. They are job hunting and employment scams, which may sound like the same thing but they each have a different modus operandi.”
The most common scam associated with job hunting involves the request of a deposit, which is most commonly associated with work-at-home opportunities, Johnson explains. “These types of scams work when an, ‘employer’ or scammer says that a deposit is needed to start working for them. They will probably tell you that the deposit will be used for supplies and training materials.
“The most important thing to remember is that you should never have to pay for anything to get a job,” she says. “Think about the logic, you work to get paid not the other way around.”
Johnson says that job seekers should also be on the lookout for employment scams, which usually involve the scammer attempting to get hold of your personal details and, as with the job hunting scams, are usually focused around offering work-from-home opportunities where the scammer offers a job that doesn’t exist.
“The ‘employer’ will then ask you to fill out documentation or ask you for your bank account information to set up direct deposit for work done.
“Once they have your personal information, you are likely to never hear from them again. However, you will most likely find yourself with an identity theft problem.”
She says that the best way to avoid falling victim to this type of scam is by using judgement and, if a job sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
“You must be cautious of any opportunity that requires paying a deposit or a listing that wants your personal information before you know exactly what you will be doing,” she adds.
Johnson warns jobseekers to be on the lookout for common scams, where it’s stated that there are only a certain number of openings left, or there is a strange or free email addresses, or where the user is required to meet the prospective “employer” at strange times and unusual places.