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How to Identify Fake or Scam Job Offers

How to Identify Fake or Scam Job Offers

“Everybody eye don red”, a suspect said when apprehended for posting fake / scam job offers online. We also remember the tragic tale of the young lady, Ini Umoren, who met her fate when she thought she was going for a job interview. Our hearts have not healed from that sad tale, and millions of others that may remain untold simply because they wanted a job. It made some Nigerians paranoid as to how they could identify scam /fake job offers online or offline.

Now more than ever, it is imperative, for security reasons that you no go fall maga for unscrupulous elements looking to perpetrate all forms of atrocities. No matter where you come across job offers, there is always a tendency that some of them are geared towards defrauding you, or for the freelancers, getting you to work without pay. They could also be after personal information or influencing you in some way to join one of these multi-level marketing schemes.

Whatever the reason, we have thought it helpful to put together some simple principles that can help you to identify fake / scam job offers.

Before that, here is something you can habitually do whenever you see a job offer, you’re interested in: Google. Google. Google.

See if it appears on any reputable job platform. If you can access the poster of the job, access them and politely make your inquiries, but first, Google. We’ll shed more light on what you should be looking for later on.

So, let’s get to it, then

How to Identify Fake / Scam Job Offers

Grammatical Errors

For some reason, scam job listings or emails do not seem to bother about grammatical structure or spelling.  Perhaps it’s deliberate so that gullible people will not notice such errors and fall for the scam. Perhaps they’re just too careless to care or they just don’t know how to write proper English. Whatever the reason, this is a usual red flag to recognizing scam job offers and staying away from them.

Requesting money or personal information

No matter the offer, once it requests you to pay a sum of money to secure, kindly get away from it. Irrespective of the outcome, it is definitely not worth the risk. No matter how many people seem to be on board with the idea, it is a wonderful avenue for corruption. We want to encourage that you should not be a part of such.

You should never give out personal and private information like your account number, bvn or ATM pin.Avoid giving out other less sensitive information like your email before employment.

Little to no online presence.

This has different aspects. Remember earlier when we said google was your friend? Here is some of the information you should be looking for.

  • Ensure you can find that organization online and that there is actually an opening for that role advertised either on its website or other reputable job advertising platforms.
  •  Ensure that the contact mail, phone contact, and website addresses for that organization correspond to the ones on the organization’s website. Or at least they should indicate that a legitimate recruiter is handling their hiring process.
  • Third, ensure that in instances where a person is shown to have posted the job, they are actually working there. You can do a google search with the person’s name to verify. If you’re unable to verify this and you still intend to proceed, do so with extra caution.
  • Enter the office/interview address into Google Maps. See what kind of housing is around such an area. This should help to set your mind at rest as to the proximity of that location to the main town.

Unusual behaviours from the employer/recruiter

You’re on the safer side when you watch out carefully for unusual behaviour from recruiters. This includes, calling you repeatedly to confirm your attendance while pretending to “follow up”; unsolicited calls for an interview;being so eager to get you hired that they want to shorten your employment process; making offers that seem too good to be true.

fraudsters devise new strategies to defraud people everyday. The general principle is to keep all your senses alert when applying for a job. Question anything that seems fishy to you.

Unrealistic offers

This may look obvious. But sometimes when you’re desperate to get a job it is possible to peg many scam/fake opportunities as real.

 For example, there are many network marketers who use Facebook Jobs to peddle their schemes. Personally, we have seen a number of these on Facebook Jobs section. We peg this as a fake job offer because these are not actual jobs. Also, they will require you to invest some amount of money in order to get started.

In other instances, they can offer insane amounts of money that may not be commensurate to the job description just to entice desperate enough seekers, e.g., offering a driver 1 million naira. While this may look juicy, it is something to investigate carefully.

Vague job descriptions

 When job descriptions are not specific enough for you to know where your required skills and expertise fit in, investigate.

A legitimate job should list skills, experience requirements, educational requirements, et al. Once you do not see these things, abandon such a job offer.

We have seen so many individuals fall prey to ritualists, scammers and corrupt officials. All because they were not looking carefully at job offers. We hope your next job hunt will not be a sad tale of any sort.

If you said an amen, share this article with your friend, it can save their life on their next job hunt.

Also, tell us about your experiences with these people, what you know, can better educate someone reading this.  

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