Fresh out of college? Finding a new job is exciting - but it isn't easy. It's hard to sift through countless job descriptions and submit dozens of applications, especially if "Easy Apply" isn't an option. So, when a promising offer comes along, it's only natural to be eager.
But be careful. Fake job postings and phony recruiters are increasingly targeting college graduates who lack experience in the job market. These scams can lead to financial loss and identity theft. Keep reading to learn how to protect yourself and your money from job scams.
Spotting a Job Scam
Keep an eye out for jobs that appear too good to be true. They probably are. A scammer may post a position appearing to be from a real company, promising a tempting salary and great benefits for entry-level experience. Do an online search of the company, the hiring manager or the recruiter to determine the legitimacy of the posting.
A request for money is a red flag. If your potential employer asks you to send money upfront for things like training or equipment, immediately withdraw your application. A legitimate employer will never ask you to pay for a job. A recruiter also may approach you for compensation in exchange for helping you find a job. If this is the case, there’s a strong chance the alleged recruiter is really a scammer.
Don’t give out personal information up front. Job applications usually require information like your name, contact preferences and work experience, but it shouldn’t go much deeper than that. Companies that require a background check will typically wait until much later in the process before asking for personal information like a Social Security Number. Similarly, never provide your banking information for setting up direct deposit until after you are hired. A legitimate company will not ask for those details on a job application.
Don’t act on emotion. Beware of potential employers who show a sense of urgency to hire you immediately or within the same week of the application. They may want you to “seal the deal” by sending money or personal information. This urgency is to get you to act on emotion rather than logic. If the interview process does not include an in-person or on-camera interview, that should also arouse suspicion.
To protect yourself from a job scam, research the company and role and reject any offer that asks for money or sensitive information up front. Remember to slow down and ask questions. To learn more about other scams and ways to protect yourself, visit the Ameris Bank Cybersecurity and Privacy Center.
But Wait, There’s More
You have a degree. Now what? While your security is our top priority, Ameris Bank is also here to help you make the most of your money. Create a strategy for paying off your student loans or start saving for a place of your own. There’s a lot to learn outside of the classroom, and we’re with you every step of the way.
Published April 2023
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