In this digital age, the first place we go to when we want a new job is online; within minutes you can sign up to numerous recruitment agencies and apply for jobs with just one click. But when we’re faced with an overwhelmingly large amount of information, how can we tell what’s the real deal?
“CV-Library’s latest research found that candidates aren’t savvy enough when it comes to spotting the signs of a job scam, with 72.1% admitting they wouldn’t recognise the signs and a worrying 71.3% assuming that any job posted online is legitimate.”
With these statistics in mind it’s important to raise awareness and help you to stay safe when looking for your next role.
Stay Safe when registering with job sites
The first thing you should look at when registering on a job site is that the site is reputable and has a physical address and landline phone number. Most job sites offer flexibility regarding whether you keep your profile ‘public’, ‘confidential’ or ‘private’ (non-searchable). Reputable sites will explain the difference, and you should choose the option most suitable for you.
Use a safe and hard to crack password and don’t reveal it to anybody. Never divulge private information such as your National Insurance number, driver's licence number, bank account information, credit card information, passport number or date of birth. Stay clear of any sites that ask you for this kind of information up front, as it is only necessary to provide this information when you have accepted a job offer.
The common signs of a job scam
Some of the most common signs of scammers include personal email addresses i.e. firstname.lastname@example.org and regular grammatical or spelling mistakes. Other things you should look out for are unrealistic salaries, job offers without interviews, lack of company information, overpriced DBS costs and premium rate phone numbers for telephone interviews. Once you can start to spot these signs you’ll know exactly what vacancies to avoid.
Be careful what you click
As part of the recruitment process, you may receive emails containing links to external sites. If you don’t recognise or don’t trust a link, simply do not click on it. Similarly, if you receive an email relating to a position you haven’t applied for or that doesn’t reference a specific job title, you should be cautious, we recommend that you delete the email and contact the job site involved so they can investigate further.
Report the Fraudsters
Reports show a staggering 80% of online fraud goes unreported! If you see something online that you’re worried about then inform the job site and The Internet Fraud Complaint Centre which has an online complaints centre. The more cases that are reported means that more time and money will go into preventing fraudsters targeting job seekers. The IFCC report process requires basic information, including information on the perpetrator and type of fraud.
So make sure you follow some of these simple rules when you’re on your next job hunt and save yourself the time and distress of being sucked into a scam.