With job scams on the rise, it is more important than ever to proceed with caution throughout your job search. There have been numerous reports of fraudulent postings, fake Recruiters, and illegitimate companies who are pretending to hire. This is especially common in job postings for remote/work-from-home positions. It can feel impossible to navigate through what is real vs. fake, but there are several major red flags that are always best to avoid.
- A legitimate job posting will never ask for a fee to apply.
- A real job posting will have a digital footprint (company Facebook page, LinkedIn, website, and so forth). Some smaller companies may have less of an online presence, but you should still be able to find something about them online – even if it is simply a phone number that you can call and verify is real! Always check to make sure the web address of the company is their REAL web address. This goes for domain email address as well. (Example- the difference between @gmail.com and @gmil.com is a sure way to find a fake!)
- A real job posting will have some sort of process in place for you to speak with the Hiring Manager or Recruiter first. Do not accept an offer or reveal your information to anyone or any company if you have not thoroughly spoken to or met them for an interview.
- Follow your instincts. If something feels fishy about a company or if what they are saying doesn’t make sense, run!
- Ask a lot of questions. Don’t be afraid to do your homework! A real Recruiter is happy to answer your questions about the open position.
- There is not a 100% safe job site. Unfortunately, even LinkedIn and Indeed can have fake postings, and they are doing their best to filter and remove everything that is dishonest or a scam.
- Do not disclose any of your personal information, such as your social security number and birthday, until a valid offer of employment has been made. In the past, we asked our job seekers to complete our pre-employment application when they registered with us. We have changed our process due to the rise in scammers. McCallion Staffing now only requires job seekers to complete paperwork once a formal offer has been made.
There is no fail-proof method to avoid being scammed, but taking notice of any red flags will certainly help mitigate your chances of experiencing a bad situation. You can also resort to word-of-mouth and references if you really can’t determine if the company is real. An easy way to do this is via local Facebook groups or social sites, such as LinkedIn or NextDoor. Never feel guilty about asking around to see if anyone else has ever heard about the company in question. Good luck!