In today’s job market, it’s more important than ever for job seekers to spot a fake job opening BEFORE applying to it. With so many people looking for work, scammers are taking advantage of unsuspecting job seekers.
Recently, we have come across several scammers on Facebook pretending to work for a company in hopes of luring job seekers to apply for their fake job openings.
Many times, you can spot a fake job posting from a mile away, but other times, it is very difficult to tell. In this one case we saw recently, someone in Jobs Around Rhode Island’s Facebook Group posted several job openings from a company called Transcarent Inc.
After seconds of searching Google, we found that Transcarent Inc. was a legitimate company. However, the job openings were not.
We are not sure what the individual was going to do after getting in contact with a job seeker, but more than likely, they would have asked for personal information like an SSN or scammed the job seeker for money.
The fact is, the only way we were able to determine this was a fake job posting was because we called Transcarent Inc. on the phone. They informed us this individual is not associated with their company, and they do not currently have any of those open jobs.
Sometimes it is very hard to tell if a job posting is fake, so here are some tips to help you avoid being scammed.
Check the grammar and spelling in the job posting - if it's full of errors, it's probably fake
One of the first signs that a job posting could be fake is if it is full of grammar and spelling mistakes. This is an indicator that whoever posted the job did not bother to thoroughly read through and check for errors, so you should proceed with caution.
It may be worthwhile to look for more information about the company or organization, as well as research contact details and even just double-check things that don’t seem quite right from the listing. However, if a posting looks too good to be true, then it probably is – so take the time to check the grammar and spelling within the listing to confirm its legitimacy before investing too much time in applying for a position that does not exist.
See if the company is asking for personal information upfront - they shouldn't be
When browsing the web, it can be easy to trust a business to handle personal information. After all, they need your name and address to complete your purchases or send billing information. However, if you are asked for too much information upfront without any obvious reason for needing it all, be wary. Companies should be transparent about why they need certain information from you, like your age or income level. Remember that you have the right to protect yourself and that most companies will understand if you refuse to give them more than what’s necessary.
In short: before providing any extra personal details, make sure that the company is reputable and can explain why it needs your data in a detailed and honest way.
Research the company to see if they're legitimate - a quick Google search can tell you a lot
Before taking the plunge and investing your time and energy into a company, be sure to verify its legitimacy. It’s easier than ever to do so–a quick Google search can give you insight into the company’s history and reviews as well as any potential warnings or flags.
Although there are potential risks in doing business with a new company, it isn’t worth skipping the step of research altogether. Do your due diligence and arm yourself with all of the relevant information to ensure that you won’t be taken advantage of down the road. If a company has no social media platforms, a website is spelling errors, or bad reviews on Glassdoor or Indeed, it may be best for you to avoid applying to that job opening.
If the salary is too good to be true, it probably is - do your research to find out what similar positions pay
Even though you may have found a job that seems like the perfect fit and provides an amazing salary, it might be too good to be true. Before getting your heart set on a dream job, do your research to make sure this particular salary is accurate compared to similar positions offered in the industry. Many times, fake job postings will include very high salaries to ensure they are receiving job applications.
Spending some extra time carrying out research on salaries from reputable sources can help ensure that you can avoid too good to be true salaries.
Suspicious URL - Don't Click it!
When investigating a possible job opportunity, make sure to take a close look at the listed website URL. Check if the company name is spelled correctly and if it is practical: many companies like having short web addresses and having a long, difficult to understand URL could be a sign of identity theft or potential scams. Furthermore, pay attention to any country code contained in the link – if it differs from where you were expecting the job, exercise caution before proceeding. Assess all information against what you already know about the posting before taking any further steps.
Generic Email Address - GMail, Yahoo, or Hotmail emails are a red flag
It can be a red flag if the email address of a recruiter doesn’t look professional. If it appears to have been set up with a generic provider, like Gmail or Yahoo, you should question their legitimacy and may even begin to doubt if they represent the company they work for. Even if this isn’t the case, unprofessional methods of communication do not necessarily reflect well on an organization’s values or approach to conducting business.
While emails don’t guarantee anything about reliability or trustworthiness, it’s best to go with someone that has put in the effort to make you feel comfortable by providing an address from either the recruiting agency or hiring company’s domain.
You Are asked to pay something - Don't Pay for anything other than a Uniform
If a job listing requires you to pay money before starting the position, be aware that it could be a scam. You may think that you’ve found the perfect work from home opportunity, but many scammers use convincing ads to take advantage of people who are looking for legit positions. Before shelling out any money, carefully research this company and read reviews to make sure they are legitimate. This way you can protect yourself against these scammers before you end up losing your hard-earned cash.
Trust your gut - if something feels off, it probably is!
It is often said that intuition can be just as important, if not more important, than intellect in life. Following your gut instinct can help to steer you away from potentially troublesome situations and guide you towards better decisions. If something triggers a feeling of uneasiness in you, it’s best to take a step back and consider the pros and cons carefully before proceeding. More often than not, people discover that their intuition was right all along. This is why trusting your gut is fundamental. Respect your inner voice – if it tells you something is off, it probably is!
All in all, job scams remain a major problem for job seekers. According to LinkedIn article, around 5% of all job openings posted are fraudulent. Always be extra vigilant when looking for jobs online, and follow the aforementioned tips to ensure that you don’t become a victim to a scam. At the end of the day, it’s essential to use your common sense and trust your gut – if something feels off, it probably is! Additionally, you can also check with organizations such as the Better Business Bureau to make sure they are accredited by them.
Ultimately, the best way to determine whether or not a potential job opportunity is valid is always through good old-fashioned research – so take your time, consult reliable resources and use good judgment!
If you are looking for legitimate job openings, we have several amazing opportunities for you!