Job Scams, Image Credit: Pixabay
🧿 There are more people than ever who are looking for new employment or open to offers.
🧿 This is why it’s so important that we are all armed with as much information as possible to avoid being the victim of a Job Scam.
🧿 Shockingly it’s easy than you think to become a victim.
🧿 We also recommend that you visit JobsAware, a non-profit, joint industry and law enforcement organisation working to combat job scams.
In 2017, the then Employment Minister Damien Hines said that 10% of jobseekers had fallen victim to a scam. By the time of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, employment scams had grown by 65%.
How Do Employment Scams Work?
In essence these are schemes set up by criminals pretending to be employers, recruiters or hiring managers. This is why no one is safe from these very well thought out and clever practices.
Unfortunate victims are offered fake jobs and in return, let’s be absolutely clear, there’s a heavy price to pay.
These unscrupulous people want your money, financial and personal information. Including bank details and National Insurance number.
Employment scams rely on our ignorance and lack of knowledge.
This is what you need to look out for:
- Jobs packaged as genuine opportunities – a wolf in sheep’s clothing, waiting to pounce and inflict misery.
- Phishing – These are scams where you are invited to click on dodgy email links, telephone calls, messaging or you may be tricked into downloading malicious software.
- Poor Job Descriptions – often with very little detail then off the back of this there is the speedy job offer – A huge red flag.
- Pay too good to be true – much more than the going rate. You need to ask yourself why and investigate further?
- Grammatical and Spelling Errors – A big give away and clue.
- Fake employers – often like to communicate with their likely victims via messaging.
- Money Upfront – Employment opportunities and jobs asking for money very early in the job search process. Then there’s a request to transfer funds to a nominated account.
- Asked to pay for a DBS check very early in the process – long before any job offer. Once you’ve transferred the money there’s no more contact and you’re out of pocket.
The Psychology of Job Scams
1️⃣ Time Pressure and Illusions of Scarcity
This is forcing people to act quickly as scammers and fraudsters know that we make poorer decisions.
2️⃣ Authority Bias
Where you are being persuaded that the organisation that’s made contact with you can be trusted.
They will often pretend to be your bank, HMRC, the police and other trusted professionals.
3️⃣ Greed and Status
Offering you services or opportunities that others are not getting or maybe a greater return or benefit if you go ahead with something.
Alarming UK Job Search Statistics
Nearly a third of those working are actively looking for new employment.
26% are casually looking
30% are open to the right job offer
This means there are millions more people in danger of being sucked into damaging job scams.
How to Protect Yourself?
As they say, knowledge is power and these are the strategies that we recommend you follow to avoid heartache, financial or loss of personal information.
- Find out whether job sites or job boards have protections in place to minimise or avoid job scams, before you actively use them.
- Are the jobs you’ve applied for from genuine sources?
- More and more Job Boards and Job sites are working with government agencies in order to offer greater protection to job candidates.
- One such organisation is JobsAware that offer tips, advice and a place to report job scams.
- Also all our Job Boards are signed up to JobsAware to give jobseekers that added protection.
There are now so many people looking for new employment at any one time it’s more important than ever to protect job candidates.
Education is just as important so people are not only aware of what the various scams are but how they work.
Once you’re Aware of the 3 Main Psychological Techniques:
- Time Pressure and Illusions of Scarcity
- Authority Bias
- Greed and Status
It helps you to identify possible job scams you may come across, in future.
Be careful, “Thinking that you won’t be scammed because you’re young or technologically savvy, can lead you to let your guard down” – Dr Peter Brooks
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