BBB’s Scam Tracker Sees Increase In Employment Scams

College graduates be especially careful of this!
May 23, 2017

The Better Business Bureau has seen a recent increase in job related scams being reported to BBB’s Scam Tracker. Most have to do with being contacted by what appears to be a reputable firm advising you that you have been “hired.”

The problem is that they want to send you a check and have you deposit the funds and send a portion back to them. We can this the “Fake Check” scam. The check is not real and once your bank realizes such, you are responsible for paying back the funds sent to the scam company. Not to mention any other funds you happened to use.

Most companies want potential employees to submit resumes online. This is where the scammers get their information. They contact you using the name of well-known employment firms via email. This is called phishing. Most victims tend to be college age and seeking employment. However, this scam targets every age.

What legitimate companies will not do is ask you to deposit a check, send funds back to them, and do some type of work, such as mystery shopping. They entice consumers with falsehoods that include:

High salary for unskilled labor.

Asking for an advance fee.

Offers that simply sound too good to be true.

Email addresses that are Gmail, Hotmail, etc. Legitimate firms usually do not use public email accounts.

Improper grammar and spelling, indicating the email could be from a foreign company.

So, what do you do? BBB provides the following questions to ask any company seeking your employment.

Questions to Ask an Employment Recruiter:

When you are approached about a potential job, take the time to ask lots of questions.  Vague answers are a red flag that should arouse your suspicion.  Good questions to ask include:

  • Where did you get my name?
  • What did you learn about me from the person who referred you?
  • Do you work on retainer or on contingency?
  • How many years have you been in business?
  • How many people in my line of work have you placed in the last few years, and with this employer?  Can you supply references?   (Realize, of course, that these names will probably represent satisfactory experiences.)
  • What are the details and location of the job, and why would it appeal to me?
  • What is the compensation being offered?  (Asking directly keeps both parties from needlessly wasting their time.)
  • Is the position salaried or is it paid hourly, with the possibility of overtime?
  • Is this a contract job?  If so, what is the contract length, and who handles payment and the contract authorizing payment?
  • How strongly do I compare to other candidates for this position?
  • How quickly will you follow up with me?
  • Is there any financial obligation on my part? 

If you have been contacted by an unscrupulous company regarding employment, please let us know. Visit BBB’s Scam Tracker and report the scam. This allows us to warn others. 

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