The other day I received an email from a recruitment coordinator saying that they had seen my resume online and would be interested in interviewing me for a sales position within the next two weeks. This seemed odd to me, because I did not recall posting my resume on the website they mentioned. The email was in a template form and did not mention anything specific about my resume, only that my background and qualifications made me a strong candidate for the position. This gave me the feeling that the email was sent as a mass email which they only personalized by inserting my name at the top.
I wasn’t interested in the position described in the email, but I decided to Google the name of the company anyways to find out what they were about. Sure enough, I found many websites where people described experiences similar to mine. Some people wrote that they did respond to the email, only to find out that it was a scam.
Scammers are taking advantage of how many people are currently out of work and looking for jobs. They realize that many people are applying for jobs online, so they have started sending emails and fake job applications in the hopes of tricking people into revealing personal information.
An article from CNN.com gives some tips for spotting a job scam. Here is my summary of the key points:
1. No legitimate job will ask you for money.
2. Beware of ads that make outrageous claims, don’t specify job duties and don’t require a resume.
3. If “work from home” appears in the header, it is probably a scam. Working from home should not be part of a job title and is often used as bait by scammers.
4. Miracles do happen, but it is not likely that they will appear in your inbox on their own.
5. Much like kidnappers, scammers often catch their prey by dangling enticing things in front of them. Don’t fall for promises that sound too good to be true.
6. Beware of emails that come from well-known companies but carry a “free” email address (such as gmail, aol, etc.) for reply. Scammers have used the names and websites of reputable companies to fool job seekers.
Do you have any other tips to help job seekers protect themselves against job scams?