Fresh out of the military and searching for their next career move, new veterans are particularly susceptible to job hunt scams. Con artists are taking advantage of this by posting fake help wanted ads that appeal to (and hope to fool) veterans.
How the Scam Works:
You just got out of the military and are looking for your next career move. The job market is tight, but you spot a help-wanted ad for a security guard. The post says the company is specifically looking for veterans.
You send your resume and soon receive a call from the “hiring manager.” He says you are a great fit and offers you the position. There’s just one catch: You need to pay $150 for training before you can start work.
Your new boss tells you to either wire money or use a pre-paid debit card. You need the job, so you follow his instructions. But when you show up to your first day of training, no one is there. Your new job is bogus, and you are out the $150.
The security guard help wanted ad is the latest job scam preying on veterans (see here and here for cases in the news), but it is far from the only one. A couple years ago, scammers targeted veterans with fake job ads claiming to be from the United Nations. Always use caution when applying for jobs, and follow our tips below to spot scam job ads.
How to Spot a Job Scam:
Here’s how to spot a job scam before you waste your time and money:
- Read the ad carefully: Job postings with grammatical errors, misspellings and lots of exclamation marks are likely scams. Ads promoting jobs with generic titles, such as admin assistant or customer service rep, and containing the phrases “Teleworking OK,” “Immediate Start” and “No Experience Needed” are popular in scam ads.
- Do some online detective work: If a job looks suspicious, search for it in Google. If the result comes up in many other cities with the exact same job post, it is likely a scam. Also, check out the business’ website to make sure the opening is posted there. If you are still skeptical, call the business to check on the position.
- You’re offered the job on the spot. You may be qualified candidate, but how does the hiring manager know? Hiring a candidate on the spot – especially after only a phone interview or email exchange – is a big sign that there isn’t a real job.
- You are asked for money or personal information: Be very cautious of any job that asks you to share personal information or hand over money. Scammers will often use the guise of running a credit check, setting up direct deposit or paying for training.
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