School is almost out for the summer, which means many high school and postsecondary students are on the job hunt.
While there are many legitimate job postings, fake employment scams are also out there, targeting unsuspecting students looking for a summer job.
These scams target anyone who is looking for a job online and are among the top 10 scams the Better Business Bureau has warned about this year.
“These are fairly complex cheque cashing schemes,” says Evan Kelly, Senior Communications Advisor for Better Business Bureau in a release. “The concern is that cheque cashing schemes, like employment scams, are the number one riskiest scam for millennials.”
How does the scam work?
The job seeker is contacted with a job offer through LinkedIn or Indeed.ca, for a job they usually haven’t applied for yet. The job is a work-from-home setup, where the price is too good to be true.
Upwards of up to $2,000 a week have been reportedly offered for the role of “mobile office administrator,” but the details of the role are left vague.
What happens next?
The “employer” sends the summer student a cheque to deposit. After depositing the amount, the unsuspecting victims are asked to withdraw a certain amount for themselves and send the rest back to the company to check their payment process system. A similar version of the scam asks the victim to send an email transfer to another ’employee’.
Ultimately, the cheque that has been deposited, bounces, leaving the job seeker out of pocket and still without a job.
How to avoid an online employment scam
- Any job that offers that requires an up-front payment is likely a scam
- Any Human Resource Representative that responds with a Hotmail, Gmail or Yahoo account is potentially a scammer
- If you didn’t apply for it, it’s not a job
- Legitimate companies want to meet in person
- Too-good-to-be true salaries should raise flags
- Research the company – typically they can be difficult to find, but more complex scams use the name of a real business and copy its website with stock images and links that don’t work
- If it seems to good to be true, it probably is