Scammers are taking outdated ads from real employers, changing them, and posting them on employment websites and career-oriented platforms like Indeed or LinkedIn. The modified ads seem to be real job offers with legitimate companies. They’re not. In fact, their goal is to trick you into sharing personal information. So how do you know if you’re dealing with a scammer?
Know that some of the hijacked job postings are offers to work from home as a personal assistant or customer service representative. Then, they’ll ask you for information like your Social Security and your bank account number so they can (supposedly) deposit your salary. Sometimes, they say you got the job and send you a check to buy equipment that you have to cash (and send money to them). But these are scams.
Here are more ways to spot and avoid phony job postings:
- Verify job openings before you apply. Visit the official website for the organization or company you’re applying for. Most include a “career opportunities” or “jobs” section.
- See what others are saying. Look up the name of the company along with words like “scam,” “review,” or “complaint.” The results may include the experiences of others who’ve lost money.
- Never deposit a check from someone you don’t know. An honest employer will never send you a check and then tell you to send them part of the money. That’s a scam.
Written by Gema de las Heras, Consumer Education Specialist, FTC