How to Avoid Job Scams
During your job search, you are bound to run into scammers that are looking to sell you an amazing job but instead steal your information. I’ve been on the job hunt for a little over 5 months now with over 100+ applications, and I'm here to try and help you avoid these job scams.
I’ll be talking about one specific job scam that really almost got me. I’ll tell you about the red flags and what you can look for in the future to protect yourself from getting scammed. These online scammers like to get you all fired up and excited that you are about to land your first position and then they swipe your SSN and it's all over.
When I describe this scam that happened to me personally, I will not leak any names because I don’t want to ruin the reputation of the actual real people that work for the companies that the scammer's copy. This one really bothered me because they prey on junior developers, or any developer into a good, solid job and then steal their information.
The first example below is when I first got the email about the company reviewing my resume on angel. I had an account on AngelList but I didn't take notice that it said only angel till after. They caught my attention by the start-up salary and paid training, as well as the software engineer position from home. Who wouldn’t want to work from home? And then finally they wrap it up by saying, I will be receiving an email from one of the hr agents.
The very next day I received this email from the hr person saying that I need to connect with someone on skype that is the company’s secured staff management gateway. At this point, I started noticing the red flags because in all of my interviews and hearing about other people's interview process nothing about skype was involved. But I continued because I still wasn’t quite sure.
After following the link to join the skype, I messaged the person and they responded not too long after. They told me to kindly introduce myself and not offer to get on the call or anything. After a little, the person said “I have your interview percentage ready on my desk.. are you ready to know your stand?” I was curious but confused because I didn’t take a test or answer questions. So, I said yes. They said that I scored an 84% on the questions answered and the company wants to give me a chance to work for them. At this point, I’m like ok this is definitely a scam and I'm not giving them anything personal that could hurt me. They even said that the Board of Directors welcomes you but the board of directors would have nothing to do with hiring me and welcoming me to the team.
They ended the conversation that I would be hired by the company and they will be sending me an offer letter within the next couple of days and that I would need to fill out a w-2 form and send them pictures of my driver's license.
The next day I received my offer letter in an email from them. Below is the email that they sent to me. I haven't even had one single phone call or seen a real person from the company at all. Not even an interview they said I had. They will lie so good but at times it can feel/look really professional.
I have not replied to the emails or anything. It’s so upsetting when it's done to you because I’ve been working super hard to land my first position as a software engineer with over 100+ applications applied too and that's where they get you.
Don’t ever give out valuable information till you speak and see someone from the company. Do your research on the people you are talking to, make sure that they work for the company you applied to. Don’t use skype and conversations because no company will pay 80/hr to a junior software engineer and not even do an interview or technical interview.