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  • Geebo 9:00 am on January 12, 2023 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , employment, , , ,   

    Scams prey on desperate jobseekers 

    By Greg Collier

    Pundits and naysayers will try to tell you that nobody wants to work anymore. What many claim the real problem to be is that many employers won’t pay a living wage. So, some jobseekers could be forgiven for ignoring red flags when being offered a job with good wages from someone who turns out to be a scammer.

    A woman in Arizona recently lost $5000 to a scammer who promised her a $72,000 a year job. The scammers claimed to be from a legitimate company that is headquartered in Australia, but has positions in the US. This would be a work from home position, and she was hired after an audio-only online interview. Then a scam familiar to our readers began to take hold.

    The Arizona woman was sent a check for $5000 by her supposed employer. She was instructed to deposit the check into her banking account, keep $300 for herself, and use the remaining $4700 to buy office equipment for her position. So, she deposited the check and after the check showed up in her account, she bought $4700 worth of money orders and sent them to the so-called office equipment vendor.

    But, as this story always goes, the check sent to the victim turned out to be a fraudulent check. Banks will make the funds available after a deposit out of courtesy within a few days. However, it takes longer than that for the banks to determine a check is fake. This leaves scam victims in the lurch, with them usually having to pay the amount of the check back to the bank.

    No real employer will ever ask you to deposit a check into your banking account, then ask you to use the money to pay someone else. Most big businesses have fleets of accountants and accounts payable people to make payments like that.

    If you’re hired very quickly after an online interview or hired on the spot, there’s a good chance the offer isn’t legitimate. If they’re representing themselves as being from an actual company, go to their website to see if the position they’re offering actually exists.

  • Geebo 8:00 am on October 14, 2022 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: employment, , , , , , ,   

    Work from home job is just an identity theft scam 

    By Greg Collier

    More and more employers are offering work from home positions to new recruits. However, scammers have been offering work from home positions longer than employers and know how to convince their victims the job is for real. Work from home scams go back to the days when envelope stuffing positions were offered in the back of magazines. So, it should really come as no surprise when scammers and con artists continue to find victims for their schemes.

    The work from home scam we’re about to discuss may be familiar to our readers, and it’s the reshipping or repackaging scam. In this scam, the scammers typically approach someone who is looking for a job. If they’re looking for a work from home job, it’s even better for the scammers. The scammers will claim that they found the victim’s resume online and that the victim would be perfect for the position.

    That position is one where the victim is expected to receive packages at their home, inspect them for damages, then ship them to a third party. The packages the victims receive are usually items that were paid for with stolen credit cards. Then the victim unknowingly is shipping them to another scammer who will sell the items for a profit.

    However, there is a secondary outcome to the reshipping scam. The scammers have the victims fill out official-looking paperwork as if the victim is really applying for a job. This includes not only the victim’s Social Security number but can include their banking information as well under the guise of having direct deposit set up.

    A victim from Oklahoma worked one of these scam positions for a month. When she asked the phony employer about payment, the scammers cut off all communication with her. Here, this person thought they would be paid, but instead are now behind on their bills thanks to the scammers.

    The best way to protect yourself from this scam is to know that the reshipping position is not a real job offered by real companies. This kind of job offer only comes from scammers. Be wary of any employment offer that seems to be going too fast from the time of contact to the time of hire. Also, be wary of any position where the employer only communicates with you through some kind of messaging app. These are used instead of more traditional communications, so the scammers can remain virtually anonymous.

  • Geebo 8:00 am on May 3, 2022 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , employment, , ,   

    BBB warns of work from home job scam 

    BBB warns of work from home job scam

    By Greg Collier

    During the height of the pandemic, many jobs that had previously been done in offices were changed to work from home positions. To many, this showed that commuting to an office every day wasn’t necessarily needed for their jobs. When companies started calling their workers back to the office, many workers decided to find other work from home positions instead. While this can be seen as a positive for workers looking for more of a balance between their work and home lives, it’s also been a positive for scammers.

    Work from home scams are hardly new and even pre-date the internet. In the analog days, scammers would take out want ads in newspapers offering work at home jobs stuffing envelopes. Now, with our modern internet, work from home scams have become more prevalent and more dangerous. Then add to that the pandemic showed us the viability and legitimacy of work from home positions, work from home scams are experiencing a renaissance.

    With this, the Better Business Bureau is issuing a new warning about an old job scam. In this scam, the scammers will tell a victim that they found the victim’s resume online and want to hire them. The victim will then be instructed to move the conversation to a messaging app like Telegram. After a faux-interview over the messaging app, the victim is hired and is asked to sign a contract that asks for their name, address, and date of birth, along with their banking information. This leads to identity theft, but the damage doesn’t always end there.

    In some cases, the victims are sent checks and are told to deposit them in their bank accounts. They’re then instructed to use that money at a specific vendor to purchase office supplies, such as a laptop. Both the phony employer and phony vendor are in on the scam. Once the victim’s bank discovers the check is a fake, the victim will be held responsible for the amount of the check.

    With any job offer that you didn’t apply for personally, you should always research the company first. Use the company’s name along with the terms ‘scam’ or ‘review’ to see how other people have interacted with them. Be wary of any company that doesn’t perform interviews in some personable manner. If everything is done over text, email or messaging app, there’s a pretty good chance you’re being scammed. Lastly, no legitimate company will ever ask you to use your personal bank account to pay for company expenses.

  • Geebo 8:00 am on April 7, 2022 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: employment, , , ,   

    Even LinkedIn has job scams 

    Even LinkedIn has job scams

    By Greg Collier

    When we think of social media scams, we normally think of platforms like Facebook and Instagram. When we think of online job scams, we might typically think of platforms like Craigslist. When it comes to job scams on social media, we don’t usually think of LinkedIn. While it may not be LinkedIn’s intention, the social network gives off an impression that it’s for professionals to network with other professionals. LinkedIn may also give its users a false sense of security when it comes to being recruited by an employer. What many LinkedIn users seem to forget is anybody can open a LinkedIn account under any name they want. Anybody can claim to hold a position that they don’t currently hold, such as job recruiter.

    The Better Business Bureau is warning LinkedIn users that phony job recruiters are scamming victims out of money and personal information. In one instance, an Indiana woman was hired rather quickly for a work at home position she applied for on LinkedIn. The woman was asked by her supposed employer to open a bank account in her name to book a conference for the phony company. Thankfully, she realized it was a scam before she opened the account. Unfortunately, others have not been so lucky.

    In other instances, the phony recruiters have asked for money upfront for training or business supplies. After the victims have paid the recruiter, the job never materializes. This is after the victim has supplied the recruiter with their personal information during the application process. This often leads to the applicants becoming victims of identity theft.

    The best way a LinkedIn user can protect themselves against this scam is to thoroughly research the company and the recruiter offering the position. If their profiles are filled with grammatical errors, the odds are pretty good they’re scammers. You can also ask to speak to the recruiter on the phone. While it’s not a guarantee of dissuading a scammer, it will go a long way in weeding many of them out.

  • Geebo 9:00 am on February 14, 2022 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , employment, Indeed, ,   

    Contemporary job offer is same old scam 

    Contemporary job offer is same old scam

    By Greg Collier

    The Better Business Bureau has issued a warning over a company that offered positions in cryptocurrency trading that was allegedly a scam. Several people have reported applying for a position on the job board Indeed that ended up costing the victims thousands of dollars. The position was said to be for a portfolio manager for stock and Bitcoin, but instead, the victims were used as money mules. While dealing in Bitcoin trading may seem like a job of the future, in this instance, it turned out to be one of the oldest job scams in the books.

    Right off the bat, the victims received payments in their own bank accounts. They were then instructed to use the money to purchase Bitcoin for clients. One victim even used his own Cash App account to purchase the cryptocurrency. A few days after receiving the payments and having already bought Bitcoin, the victims’ banks inform them that the payments they received were fraudulent. This meant that their bank accounts were overdrawn by thousands of dollars, which the banks hold them responsible for. The supposed company has since disappeared from the internet.

    If this scam sounds familiar, that’s because it’s a variation of the fake check scam. Even though no paper checks were involved in this particular scam, the outcome is the same. No legitimate employer will ever ask you to deposit funds to be used for business into your own bank account. Scammers are taking advantage of a courtesy of banks that lets you withdraw money from your account before the check or payment has been verified as legitimate.

    This story also shows that even well-known job boards like Indeed aren’t immune to job scams. These scammers even held multiple interviews, albeit online, with their victims. Victims were even sent official looking documentation that outlined their job responsibilities and salary.

    Scammers are so practiced in their craft that they can appear to be a legitimate business. However, there is almost always a telltale sign to indicate a scam. In this case, it’s using your own bank account for supposed business related expenses.

  • Geebo 8:00 am on September 3, 2021 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: employment, , , ,   

    New job scam steals your identity 

    New job scam steals your identity

    By Greg Collier

    With so many job scams out there, it’s often hard to discern between a legitimate job offering and a scam. More often than not, there is usually a red flag somewhere along the line in the application process. For example, if you’re asked by the potential employer to pay for things like application fees or background checks, that’s a good indicator that the job could be a scam. Even if you get hired, there can still be red flags, such as being asked to deposit a check used for business expenses into your own bank account. But what if scammers were able to mimic a legitimate company while offering a phony position. According to the Better Business Bureau, that’s exactly what is happening.

    A woman in Rhode Island received an email that said she was eligible for a position after the company found her information on a state employment website. She was asked to reply to the email if she was interested in the position. The email appeared to come from a legitimate company in the region and even used the name of an actual company employee. The victim interviewed for the job. The report doesn’t say how she was interviewed, but it’s probably safe to assume it was a virtual interview.

    The scammers sent her a bunch of normal-looking paperwork to fill out and instructed her to verify her identity at a legitimate web portal used by many employers. After she signed in to the portal and gave all her pertinent information, she received a notification that her information was being sent to the California unemployment office. Essentially, the scammers stole her identity out from under her to apply for unemployment benefits in her name.

    If you’re unsure if a job offer is legitimate or not, check the email address the offer was sent from. If the email is from a free service like Gmail or Outlook.com, there’s a good chance the offer may not be real, as most legitimate employers have their own corporate email addresses. You can also go to the company’s website to see if the position you’re being offered is even open.

  • Geebo 9:00 am on March 8, 2021 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: employment, , job fairs, , , , , temp agency   

    Seven tips on finding a new job 

    Seven tips on finding a new job

    By Greg Collier

    There’s light at the end of the tunnel now. Job markets are starting to open up and slowly but surely several new positions are becoming available around the country. However, it’s not to the point yet where you can take the application process lightly. You need to compete for these positions and in order to achieve that you need an edge against your competition. We’ve found some tips that we think will give you better chances of finding that new position.

    1. Craft a professional looking resume.

    A resume is your best way of getting your foot in the door with a new employer. However, not everyone knows how to write a resume. No matter what position you may be applying for, a well-crafted resume speaks volumes to a potential employer.

    Both Google Docs and Microsoft Word online have great templates that can help you craft your resume and their services are free. If you’d prefer and can afford it, there are services where people will craft a professional resume for you. Feel free to get creative with your resume’s appearance but not so creative that the resume is difficult to read or looks too unprofessional.

    In most cases, you’ll be able to send your resume electronically. However, you should have several copies of your resume printed out. Too many times people have gone to interviews where they’ve submitted their resume electronically only to have the interviewer ask for a hard copy. While most of don’t have printers at home anymore, you usually can get files printed at your local library relatively inexpensively. You can also print out your resume at retail delivery outlets like the UPS Store.

    Try to keep your resume down to one page. Multiple page resumes have the potential to get lost in the shuffle. While you may have a lengthy employment history, try to limit it to the past 5-10 years. If you’ve only held one job in that time then feel free to go back further in time.

    Whatever you do, don’t try any of the resume tricks that look like you’re trying to fool the employer. The most infamous one of these tricks is using keywords from the job ad on your resume in white font. When employers scan resumes they will find those supposedly invisible keywords and will discard your resume.

    2. Use social media to your advantage

    If there’s a particular company you’re eager to work for, follow them on social media. By doing so, you may gain an insight into their hiring cycles and practices. We’d recommend following them on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or LinkedIn. Make LinkedIn a priority and then follow the company on whichever other platform the company is most active on. Don’t be afraid to interact with the company’s social media either. Leave a comment on their posts that you find interesting. This could go a long way in establishing yourself with the company. Just always remember to be professional when dealing with the company even on social media.

    You may also want to consider cleaning up your own social media. It’s an unfortunate fact that many employers will go through an applicant’s social media to make sure they’re hiring the right person. Employers don’t want to find a bunch of inappropriate posts on your social media profiles. For example, if you have a series of pictures on your social media where you have a drink in your hand in every picture, you may want to make those posts private. You may have had a great time on Spring Break in Cancun doing tequila shots for breakfast, but your prospective employer doesn’t need to know this. This goes double for that time you and your friends smoked the fattest joint you’ve ever seen. While cannabis may be legal in many states now, most employers still look down on that kind of recreational activity. Along those lines, try to limit which of your friends can tag you in posts as they may post an unflattering picture of you that could show up on your profile.

    Also consider making any political or off-color posts private as well.

    And while this next tip isn’t really related to social media, we’d thought we’d throw it in here. Always use a professional email address when applying for a job. While you may have had the same email address since grade school, employers don’t want to see an email address like StonerLord420@weedmail.com or babeegrrl@partymail.com. Stick with using an email address that just encompasses your name like JohnSmith@example.com, or even something like jsmith785@example.com.

    3. Reach out to friends and family

    If you’re currently looking for work, don’t be afraid to let your friends and family know. They might not know someone directly who’s looking for new employees, but someone they know might. Employers love getting referrals for new employees from existing employees.

    If you went to college, think about reaching out your college buddies or your former fraternity brothers or sorority sisters. Except for that one person who’s still in college on the ten-year plan. They’re going to need more help than you. Most universities also have career and alumni events you can attend to help get your name out.

    Speaking of universities, if you have a specialized degree in a certain field, but there’s not a lot of opportunities in that field right now, give teaching a try. You don’t have to do it forever, and it looks good on a resume.

    4. Attend job fairs

    This is where printing out multiple copies of your resume comes in handy. Job fairs are a great place where you can introduce yourself to multiple employers at one gathering. You can usually find ads for job fairs on job boards and in your local newspaper or their website. You can even try talking to employers who may be out of your field. Not only that, but you may be introduced to a new experience that you excel at. Just make sure you dress professionally because the adage about making a first impression is true even if it’s for a more casual position. And lastly, don’t hesitate to ask any questions about the employer or the position. That will not only show that you’re motivated but that you’re interested in the company as well.

    5. Call or email an employer directly

    Most employers these days will want you to fill out an application or submit a resume online. However, it can’t hurt to call them directly asking about potential openings, even if they don’t have any openings that fit your experience. You might end up making a contact within their HR department. Then that way you could be at the forefront when a suitable position opens.

    You may also want to research if the company has a public email where you can reach their hiring department directly. Again, even if they don’t have any positions open currently, they could be contacting you when they do.

    6. Apply at temp or staffing agencies

    Temp agencies seem to get a bad rap when it comes to finding a new job. In many cases, they are a great way to not only build up your reputation with the company you’ve been contracted to, but you may become one of the temp agency’s star temps to contract out.

    A lot of companies love to hire someone after having them a few weeks or months as a temp. I was hired on permanently at more than one job after working for the company as a temp. However, even if you’re not hired on permanently, the temp position could still provide invaluable experience that you can use in the future.

    7. Don’t forget the job boards

    Some of the most common ways are the best and this includes searching for a job on the various online job boards. Companies use these boards because they work. You can use these boards to filter out a job by location, salary, and field among other qualifications. You can also submit your resume for any employer to review. Most will even let you set up notifications for when a position in your field becomes available.

    Also, please keep in mind that Geebo.com has an extensive employment section as well.

  • Geebo 8:00 am on October 27, 2020 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: employment, , , money orders, , ,   

    New scam switches out fake money orders for checks 

    New scam switches out fake money orders for checks

    One of the more common online scams is the mystery shopper scam. Mystery shopper is a real position. They are people hired by retail outlets to go into their stores and rate the customer service of each individual store. However, the job isn’t as common as most scammers would have you believe.

    In the mystery shopper scam, scammers will pose as these retailers and pretend to hire their victims. The scammers will then send a fake check to the victim and instruct them to deposit the check. The scammers then instruct the victim to go buy some gift cards with the money and the victim can keep what’s leftover. The victim doesn’t often find out they were scammed until the fake check bounces in their bank account and the victim is held responsible by the bank for the difference.

    A report out of North Carolina is claiming that scammers are now using fake US Postal Service money orders instead of fake checks to pull off this scam. While the fake form of payment has changed, the results are still the same. If a victim deposits the phony money orders into their account they will be responsible for the damages once the bank realizes the money orders are fake.

    As we previously stated, mystery shopper is a legitimate position. However, in order to become one, you have to become certified with the Mystery Shoppers Association and you have to contact them. They will never contact anyone out of the blue.

    Also, please keep in mind that no legitimate employer will have you deposit a check or money order into your personal account that’s supposed to be used for business purposes later. This is almost a sure sign of an employment scam.

    If you receive what you suspect is a phony US Postal money order, you can take it to your local post office, and they will be able to determine if it’s real or not.

  • Geebo 8:00 am on September 16, 2020 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: employment, , , ,   

    You could be a money mule without realizing it 

    You could be a money mule without realizing it

    If you were to hear the term money mule, you might correlate it with something along the lines of a drug mule. Drug mules are people who are knowingly taking illegal drugs across international borders. So no one would fault you if you thought money mules performed a similar task. The truth is that money mules do perform a similar task but not in the way you might think and often they have no idea they’re doing it.

    Money mules are usually unwitting pawns in international money laundering schemes. Their role is to take in stolen money or goods and send them to a new location. That location could be physical or virtual. Another problem with money mules is that they can be roped into becoming one in a multitude of ways, many of which we have discussed before.

    For example, we’ve discussed reshipping or repacking scams before. This is where you get a work from home job as a ‘shipping coordinator’, ‘warehouse distribution coordinator, or ‘local hub inspector’. You’ll be sent items and told to inspect them for damage before sending the items to a third party. These items are often either stolen or purchased with stolen information. This is one of the most dangerous forms of being a money mule because even if you didn’t know the goods were stolen, you could still go to jail. If you knowingly falsify shipping documents that violate US Customs you are breaking the law.

    Another common way scammers recruit money mules is with other phony job offers. The job itself may not matter but the scammers will send you a fake or stolen check and tell you to deposit it into your bank account. You’ll then be instructed to buy supplies from their ‘preferred vendor’. This is money that will be coming out of your own bank account. Once the bank discovers the check is fraudulent, you’ll be responsible for paying that money back to your bank. This could result in having your bank account closed and you could find it difficult to open a bank account somewhere else.

    Thanks to the current pandemic and the unemployment that’s resulted from it, money mule scams have risen to unprecedented levels. These money mule schemes have increased by 609 percent according to a leading security firm. With so many people desperate for a steady income, many are falling into the traps of these scammers.

    Legitimate employers will never ask you to pay for anything from your own bank account. If one asks you to they’re probably using you as a mule.

  • Geebo 8:00 am on May 19, 2020 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , employment, , , , ,   

    Scams targeting those trying to return to work 

    Scams targeting those trying to return to work

    With many states trying to return to normal, many people are looking to gain employment after record numbers of workers have been unemployed. Never ones to miss out on an opportunity to seize ill-gotten gains from tragedy, scammers and con artists have been increasing their scams that target job seekers.

    One particularly disturbing scam is targeting the unemployed in at least one state. In Washington, scammers are using stolen identities to try to collect unemployment benefits. This takes much needed financial relief out of the hands of the people that need them and put them potentially into the hands of overseas scammers. It is recommended to check with your state’s unemployment office to make sure your payments are being sent to the correct destination. In some states, you can even sign up for an account through the state without even needing unemployment benefits.

    Of course, scammers have also been trying to fool job seekers with legitimate-looking positions. One man looking for employment posted his resume to a number of job boards like Indeed and Monster hoping to find a position that would take advantage of the years of his experience. Instead, he received a job offer that just tried to take advantage of him. He received a job offer from a company that he had not even applied to. Everything about the position looked legitimate so he accepted the position. However, the ‘company’ sent the man his payment by a check that was over the amount he was supposed to be paid. They told him to deposit the check and return the difference to them. Thankfully, the man was familiar with the phony check scheme and did not deposit the check. But he was devastated that this was not a legitimate job.

    Lastly, old employment scams are finding new victims after so many have been unemployed for the past few months. One of those scams is the car wrap scam. In it, the scammer will promise you so much money a week to display advertising on your car. More often than not, these offers are scams. One woman in California accepted one of these positions and once again, she was sent a check that was more than she was supposed to receive. She was also aware of the phony check scam and did not deposit the check.

    While these may be lean times, always do your due diligence when looking for a job. If you are offered a position, always research the company that’s offering you the job. Sometimes, something as simple as checking their address on Google Maps can reveal their true intentions.

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