What are scam jobs?
You may find during your job hunting, occasional job advertisements on the internet and in other places which are not genuine and whose only purpose is to take advantage of you as a job seeker, usually financially.
Sometimes these are illegal, but often they exploit loopholes or grey areas in the law, or rely on the applicant not reading and understanding what they are getting into.
These are often called 'scams' or in some cases 'phishing' if they are attempts to obtain your financial/personal data for fraudulent purposes.
Tips for avoiding scam jobs
If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
Using common sense when applying for work at home jobs can go a long way to protecting you from scammers. The old saying that “if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is” goes for job ads too. If an ad states you can get rich or make thousands each month by working part time, you are most likely reading a job ad placed by a scammer. Avoid being the victim of identity theft or getting scammed by passing on these get rich quick schemes.
If a company asks you to ring a premium rate number as the only way to apply, be very wary.
If there is no method of applying for a job other than by calling a Premium Rate number, you should be extremely suspicious. If there is no email address, or landline number, or local number to call, be wary. Most legitimate businesses have a lo-call or freephone or standard landline number. Higher rate dialling codes include 0844, 0871, 0870 and 0845 . Think before you ring.
Do your research online.
Most companies these days have a web presence. Check out their website and see if there is a Company Registration number listed or a Vat Registration number. Use Companies House to determine if it is authentic or not. |If a company website is littered with spelling mistakes and grammatical errors, or if the email address seems to be spelt incorrectly, then you should be cautious. A professional organisation would never allow its’ reputation to be tarnished through lack of attention to detail like this.
Be suspicious if directed to different numbers, websites or a different company name than the one in the advert you responded to. This may be done to hide a bad reputation or a scam.
Avoid schemes where you have to pay.
You should never have to pay money to apply for a job, even if it is a seemingly minimal amount of money, £1 for instance. A reputable employer would never expect an applicant for a job to pay for the privilege. If you are asked to pay money upfront, even if it is claimed it will be refunded later, don’t do it.
When you first apply do not provide bank or financial information, passport or similar identification. These might be required later, but only if you get the job.
Be cautious if you get the job without an interview or they email you back quickly - offering you the job.
A legitimate company will spend days or weeks going through applications and would never hire someone based solely on their CV.
If in doubt:
Do not apply for the job
Do not agree to sign anything
Do not pay for any services on offer
Do not return any contact with the organisation
Ask the JobShop for a second opinion