Safe Search Tips
Hire a Vandal and other online job systems make it easier for you to find positions. Unfortunately, the same technology makes it easier for scammers to create fraudulent positions to take advantage of you. While Career Services tries to screen employers and the positions posted to Hire a Vandal, it is imperative that you, as a job seeker, exercise due diligence and caution. Read position descriptions carefully!
If a position or job offer seems too good to be true, if you feel uncomfortable with some of the information requested or if something just doesn't seem right, proceed with extreme caution and contact Career Services at email@example.com or 208 885-6121. Even if the original position description seems valid, if you receive follow-up emails, phone calls or job offers that make you feel uncomfortable, you need to proceed cautiously.
Things to Consider
- You are asked to give credit card, bank account or PayPal account numbers
- You are asked to send a payment by wire service or courier
- You are offered a large payment or reward in exchange for allowing the use of your bank account — often for depositing checks or transferring money
- You unexpectedly receive a check before you start work
- You are asked to transfer money via e-Bay, PayPal or Western Union, etc.
- You are asked for personal information, (e.g. social security number) prior to hire
- You are requested to send a photocopy of your ID, i.e., driver's license to "verify identity" prior to hire
- You are asked to complete a background check early in the recruitment process
- The posting appears to come from a legitimate company or organization, but the contact's email address doesn't match the company's website domain (i.e., firstname.lastname@example.org rather than email@example.com)
- The job posting doesn't mention the responsibilities of the job and instead focuses on the amount of money you will make
- Be wary of postings for mystery shoppers, work at home, or virtual administrative assistants or bookkeepers. Some opportunities are legitimate. Many others are not.
- Gather as much information as possible about positions for independent contractors or franchise opportunities, especially those that are not explicitly advertised as such. Some opportunities are legitimate business opportunities. Others are opportunities in which some people who don't succeed lose money. Others are scams.
- Beware of positions that require a financial investment or upfront fees.
- If you are an entry-level candidate with little experience, be wary of an offer with a salary that is way out of range.
- Multiple misspellings in a job notice are often a sign of trouble.
- If the position listing is for an international opportunity, does it include travel expenses or upfront program fees? Research the organization and compare its program/benefits with other similar opportunities.
- Verify the web address listed in the ad links to the homepage of the company listed. If it does not, it could be a scam.
- When using job boards other than Hire a Vandal, read their privacy policies carefully. Also, read how easy it is for employers to post jobs by going through the site's employer links.
Report it to Career Services at firstname.lastname@example.org or 208 885-6122.
- End all communication with the employer.
- Report it to Career Services at email@example.com or 208 885-6122.
- If you suspect you are a victim of a crime, contact the police and report it. You also can visit the Internet Crime Complaint Center.
- Depending on what personal information was disclosed, monitor or close your accounts. Depending on the situation, you may need to notify the three credit bureaus: Experian, Equifax and Transunion.
- If you sent money to a fraud employer, contact your bank or credit card company immediately to close your account and dispute the charges.
- If the incident occurred entirely over the internet, file an incident report with the Federal Trade Commission at 1-877-382-4357 or visit www.cybercrime.gov.
- Job-Hunting/Job Scams from the Federal Trade Commission
- World Privacy Forum: Job Seekers' Guide to Resumes: Twelve Resume Posting Truths
- Privacy Rights Clearinghouse: Avoiding Online Job Scams
- Monster.com: A Safe Job Search
If you have questions or concerns about job postings, a position for which you’ve applied, a task you’ve been asked to complete as part of the application process or a job offer, email Career Services at firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss it.