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Too good to be true? How you can avoid job scams

August 22, 2017 by Chris Ruffler

Too good to be true? How you can avoid job scams

You know the old adage: “If something is too good to be true, then it probably is”. It’s something that pervades all parts of life, but is just as common in job hunting.

The Curtin, Careers, Employment & Leadership team were recently made aware of a vacancy posted on UniHub that appeared to be bogus. We have since taken steps to remove the offending advertisement, alert anyone that had viewed the opportunity, and block the scammer from accessing the system ever again.

Though our Employer Engagement officers make every effort to ensure that vacancies submitted to the site are genuine and in line with Australian legislation, scammers are increasingly savvy of how to rort the system and occasionally one will slip through our strict vetting processes.

Before you apply for a job that seems too good to be true, here are six tips to ensure you don’t fall victim to a scam:

  1. Where is the job being advertised? Jobs advertised on paper notice boards, lamp posts, or free ‘classified listings’ style websites tend to have gone through fewer vetting procedures than reputable job search websites. Though these opportunities can indeed be genuine, these mediums are a lot easier for scammers to post to and you should definitely take care when applying.
  2. What is the job? Does the job state “No experience necessary”, guarantee an excellent wage or cash in hand, or perhaps allow you to work from home with ‘no strings attached’? Perhaps the job description is vague and doesn’t really tell you what you’ll be expected to do? Scammers are aware that such amazing perks and working conditions will appeal to people that are in need of employment.
  3. Who are you applying to? Look for anything dubious in the employer details and their application procedures. If the employer is impersonating a major global recruiter, they may list their contact details as a mobile phone number, an overseas phone number, or perhaps a suspicious email address that has a generic domain such as Gmail or Hotmail. Examine any web links to ensure they are taking you to a genuine website, and be on the lookout for minor typos or contradictory information about its name, details and location.
  4. What are the application procedures? Any advertisement that requests you to submit either a copy of your passport or asking for sensitive personal data such as bank details/credit card info should be viewed with immediate suspicion. If you get offered the job without an interview and then asked to provide financial information for you to get paid, do not do so.
  5. Have you researched? The internet is full of information from people that have discovered fake job advertisements and scams. Before you apply to ANY job – real or fake – you should research who the company is, what the role is and why you’re the best fit for the position. If you do this well, it’s likely that you will find information regarding its authenticity along the way.
  6. Still not sure? Students at Curtin University can contact us if they have any doubts about a job they are applying to – irrespective of where it has been advertised. We are happy to provide advice and guidance to ensure you do not fall victim to any scam and there is an extensive resource available on UniHub for further information (Curtin login required). If you are not a Curtin student, you should contact your own university careers service, or even a friend or family member before pressing that ‘Apply’ button…

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