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Online Recruitment Scams are on the Rise

I was reading today how online recruitment scams are on the rise. Apparently, many job candidates are finding themselves trapped in schemes on trustworthy sites such as LinkedIn that rob them of their time and money.

It’s easy to see why this is possible. You’re applying online, it’s difficult to confirm the identity of the persons you’re dealing with, and just when you’re excited about landing an ideal job – you discover it was a scam. This discovery could easily have happened through illegitimate demands such as requests for unusual payouts, or the mere fact that you’re not being paid for the work you’ve done.

Unfortunately, those hit the most with these scams are candidates with tech experience. To think that even these guys can get lured into such a game is astonishing, especially since they’re supposed to be wiser with online discrepancies than most folks.

I could understand the alarm and the frustration that such news brings. More and more of my clients are requesting online and remote jobs as time goes by. Who’s to know when you’re being scammed, especially if the job profile and alleged company appears legit to the layperson?

Now that I’ve discovered such a crime exists, I would take several measures to ensure my clients are protected. For one thing, I’d make sure to search online for the company’s phone number and verify it’s legal existence. If the name of the company is unfamiliar, I’d search for the name of the company in business registrars, such as the Better Business Bureau or the state’s Chamber of Commerce.

Next, I would advise my clients not to make any payments of any sort since they shouldn’t be financially responsible for any part of the recruiting process. Then I’d make it clear that before handing over bank information for automatic deposits, I would check with my bank to see if they can help identify the company’s payment method.

Other than that, I would advise clients to request online video conferences, as opposed to simply handling the process over the phone or through email communications, as these recruitments are typically handled, to put a face to the name. Besides, anyone who is in the middle of conducting a crime would not want their face revealed.

In the end, the best way to avoid this type of scam is to stay alert, verify everything, and stick to companies you are familiar with and can easily verify. When all else fails, trust your gut. If you’ve been through the grueling recruitment process before, you know that if something makes the hair on your hands stand up, you have no choice but to trust that feeling. It’s warning you that something is not right.

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