Aug 16, 2013

Posted by in Online Schemes | Comments Off

Five Easy Ways to Spot a Scam on an Online Jobs Hunting Site

There are many online jobs hunting sites out there.

When you are online jobs hunting, if you type in ‘online jobs’ (like I did), you will get a staggering ‘about 2,480,000,000′ results.

If we narrow that down, to say, ‘online jobs in the U.K.’ we get we get 841,000,000 results.  We could be sifting through that lot for the rest of our days!

It makes us wonder how many are genuine, real opportunities to make some honest money and how many of these online jobs are scams.  It is truly mind-blowing.

When you first start online jobs hunting, it is like feeling around in the dark.  If you are desperately looking for online jobs, then the scammers are lying in wait for you behind tantalizing promises of lucrative positions – just made for you.

Generally, my rule of thumb is, in the words of my Nan, ‘If it sounds too good to be true, then it probably is.

That said, there are real online jobs out there.  We have discussed a few of these already and will continue to do so over the coming months, but it is wise to start with a toolbox of sound rules that we can apply to every single scheme in the online jobs market.

If you can spot a scam, then you will save yourself a lot of time and, quite possibly, some heartache too!

So let’s look at five simple rules that you can apply when looking for online jobs

  • Never Hand Over Any Money for Fees – There is no reason why a genuine employer would ask you for an application fee.  The exception to this might be a fee for producing a C.V. or a portfolio if you register with an Agency.
  • Never Give Out Personal Information at an Online Interview or via Email – Sensitive data, such as NI numbers would never be required at this stage, only for tax forms.
  • Rerouted Links – If you click on any online jobs links within a site and it takes you somewhere else; to another online jobs site that wants a registration fee, for example, there is a pretty good chance it is a scam.
  • Never Cash a Cheque – This sounds bizarre, but it is a very popular scam.  An ‘employer’ says they will pay you by cheque, but it will be over what you are owed.  They will say this is a mistake and ask you to send a cheque back for the balance.  It is almost a given that the original cheque will bounce.  Do not send any cheques; wait for the one you have received to be cashed to you first.
  • Unreliable Online Jobs Posts – If you apply for online jobs and the job you are offered is not what you applied for.  For example, you apply for a position as a copywriter and when you receive an invitation for interview, it is actually about posting ads or filling in forms.

Tuck these basic rules into your toolbox for online jobs hunting and you will at least be forewarned when you are trailing the online jobs boards.