North Carolina Department of Justice

North Carolina Department of Justice

North Carolina Department of Justice
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Watch out for scams when job hunting online

Thursday, September 23, 2010

North Carolina consumers are reporting being targeted by con artists because they’ve posted their resumes online.
Here’s how the scam works:
After posting a resume on a job search website such as, Craig’s list, or, you’ll get numerous emails including work from home offers, lists of jobs for sale, supposed education and training opportunities, and fictitious job offers.  Many of these emails come from scammers who want to steal your personal information or your money. 
The scammers are often located overseas, making it difficult if not impossible to get your money back if you send it to them.  A number of these scams are being investigated by the FBI.
How to protect yourself:
  • Be careful when posting your resume online.  Think carefully about the personal and contact information you provide because it will be available to everyone.  For example, consider listing an email address you use only for online job searching. 
  • Don’t fall for phony jobs. Check out the job and the company thoroughly before you accept an online job offer.  Jobs that promise work as a mystery shopper or say you’ll earn thousands of dollars a week by working from home are usually too good to be true.  The mystery shopper jobs are counterfeit check scams designed to steal your money, and most work-at-home offers wind up costing you far more than you ever make. 
  • Be skeptical if you’re asked for money upfront.  Don’t agree to pay upfront for lists of potential jobs or to apply for a job.  If you’re offered training or education, check it out thoroughly before you agree to pay any money, and consider reputable local alternatives, such as your Community College, first.
  • Guard your personal information.  Job scammers may ask for your Social Security Number, saying they need it to run a background check.  Don’t provide your SSN to a potential employer until or unless you’ve checked out the company thoroughly and know the job is legitimate. Never agree to email your SSN or other personal financial information.  Email is not a secure way to share this information.
  • Beware of credit check requests.  Some job scammers will say they need to check your credit and send you to a website for a credit check.  You think you’re paying a dollar for a credit report so you can get a job.  The scammers use this trick to get your bank account information and charge you more money.

For more tips on avoiding work-at-home scams, questionable business opportunities, and other job scams, or to report a possible scam, visit