Since the global coronavirus pandemic started, the number of work-from-home (WFH) scams has soared. These scams take advantage of vulnerable, desperate job seekers who are looking for a way to support themselves and their families with decent-paying remote jobs.
These scams often require jobseekers to provide sensitive information, such as bank routing transit and account numbers, so they can use this information to commit financial fraud upon the unsuspecting victim.
One online user posted about their experience with one of these work-from-home scams in which the purported human resources representative requested their bank account information for a non-existent personal assistant job.
Fortunately, they found clues that the job was a scam, such as a minimal online presence, an “official” company website with numerous typos, company leadership in Ghana, etc. Some of the best and most informative responses to their post are below.
1. Beware of Remote Personal Assistant Job Postings
These job postings are usually fake. For example, “Remote personal assistant is one of those jobs that screams scam about 110% of the time.” This observation may be obvious to more experienced or sophisticated job seekers, but it may need clarification for someone inexperienced or unfamiliar with remote work situations.
2. Look for Red Flags
One user summarized all the red flags. Look out for a website with many typos; you can’t find any company or employee information on LinkedIn, the contact person demands your bank information, and the company is in Ghana or another country. If the company’s online presence looks suspect, it probably is.
3. More Red Flags
Are you looking for more red flags? Remote personal assistant jobs are usually fraudulent. When a remote job has a too easy hiring process and doesn’t require a lot of experience, that’s a tipoff that the job isn’t real, said one.
4. Job Search Advice
Another offered, using a dedicated email just for job searches, is an excellent way to weed out scam job proposals by labeling them as spam and keeping them out of your inbox.
5. Demands Bank Account Information
Direct deposit of your payroll checks is an option, not a requirement. An actual prospective employer would honor a request to be paid by a paper check. Any insistence on paying by direct deposit and demanding bank routing transit and account numbers means this is “1000% a scam,” warned another person.
6. Too Easy Job Interviews
One user remembered how demanding and stressful their first job interview was and advised job seekers to beware. If the first job interview you ever had was more challenging than the interview for a job you found online, it’s likely a scam.
7. No Job Interview
No job interview? No thanks! The absence of a job interview stood out to this person, who described how even warehouse jobs require candidates to undergo some interview process.
8. Show Me the Money
According to one poster, overpayment of salary and requesting the difference as a refund is a sure sign of fraud. The company will send the first week’s pay almost immediately by paper check for much more money than was owed. Then they’ll ask you to deposit the check to your account and return the difference to them.
9. Learn From Their Experience
A job seeker described having a similar experience with a fraudulent job posting, explaining how after accepting a job with a multinational organization, they were bombarded with emails from an overseas company they had never heard of before, demanding personal information, claiming they were associated with the hiring company.
10. Short, Sweet, and to the Point
Our final user advised, “Scam! Beware!” That says it all right there.