ISU Public Safety and the Career Center have been notified recently of a sharp increase in our students being contacted by individuals posing as hiring managers/employers and encouraging them to contract with them in a variety of ways for “employment” purposes. These scam “job opportunities” often take the form of “personal or office assistants” and frequently ask a student to purchase items for their business, deposit checks for the business, or negotiate sales between a vendor and a business. What the scam is attempting to do is get the student to deposit a fraudulent check (that will bounce in a few days/weeks) and purchase items or send personal checks with their own money. They are also attempting to collect personal information that could be used in future identity theft (address, SS#, bank information, etc.). This summer, the Career Center has received scam job postings and students have reported being contacted through their LinkedIn, Facebook, and Sycamore email accounts.
If you believe you have been contacted by a job scam, please forward all email correspondence to the Career Center at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 812.237.5000 to discuss the situation. The Career Center is available to talk with students about any job posting prior to responding to an inquiry. Please talk with a trusted advisor before responding to any job posting.
ISU Career Center and Public Safety encourage you to:
- Never provide any personal information by email to an employer
- Use a different strong password for each online account
- Change passwords more frequently for accounts with access to confidential data
- Never share passwords with others
- Whenever suspicious or just plain curious, google everything, website addresses, names used, companies mentioned, phone numbers given, all email addresses, even sentences from the emails as you might be unpleasantly surprised at what you find already posted online.
- Consult the Career Center or a trusted advisor if you have questions about any job posting that seems “fishy” or too good to be true.
job posting guidelines and common job scams to avoid
Over Payment Scams
Over payment scams are designed to entice you with quick money in advance of doing any work. They are typically advertised as personal assistant, administrative assistant, or book-keeping positions needed to assist with processing checks and orders for supplies, or mystery/secret shopping. The new employee is instructed to deposit the check into the bank, take out their salary and wire the remaining money to their agents. These fraudulent checks will quickly bounce and leave the new employee out thousands of dollars and facing criminal charges.
Read more about these scams: http://statenews.com/index.php/article/2012/05/email_scams
Email Phishing Scams
Online scammers are becoming much more sophisticated in their attempts to lure victims, especially using email links to false websites. It is increasingly difficult to tell the difference between legitimate and counterfeit online sites. There has been a recent uptick in phishing attacks at institutions across the country.
Be cautious if the email or job posting
- Does not list a company name
- Comes from an email address that doesn’t match the company name (most legitimate companies will use the company domain instead of a Hotmail, yahoo, or Gmail account)
- Offers to pay a large amount of money for almost no work
- Offers you a job without ever interacting with you or interviewing you
- Asks you to pay an application fee
- Wants you to transfer money from one account to another
- Offers to send you a check before you do any work
- Asks you to give your credit card or bank account numbers
- Asks for copies of personal documents
- Says you must send payment by wire service or courier
- Offers you a large payment for allowing the use of your bank account – often for depositing checks or transferring money
- Sends you an unexpectedly large check
No legitimate employer will send payment in advance and ask the employee to send a portion of it back. DO NOT provide any personal information especially social security numbers or financial information.