Excited woman
Email This Article

Preying on the desperation of the unemployed

Posted January 2009

As many unlucky job seekers are learning the hard way, an ailing economy can bring out the worst in people.

With the unemployment rate at a 17-year high, some job searchers are feeling desperate, making them vulnerable to scammers who are happy to take advantage by promising job placements in return for money or personal information that is later used for identity theft.

Joe Epstein, 58, of Brentwood, Mo., did not fall into a common trap. An e-mail from a staffing firm promised him a portal to a new job recently, about a year after being laid off as a sales representative. He called the company, talked to a “very nice, very positive” woman, who told him that his resume was selected from a job search engine. She told him that her company could improve his resume, offer interview tips and provide him with “exclusive” job listings, all for a mere $4,000. Epstein said no thanks. “Once you give them your credit card, you’re up a creek,” he told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

Consumer advocates say be suspicious if anyone seeks payments to locate a job. “I’ve never met anyone who had to pay to get a legitimate job,” said Chris Thetford, director of communications for the Better Business Bureau of Eastern Missouri and Southern Illinois.

The Federal Trade Commission received nearly 6,000 complaints against employment agencies and job-counseling services in 2007, the Wall Street Journal reported — and this was before 3.6 million Americans lost their jobs.

Linda Dominguez, author and executive coach, says fraudsters apparently are targeting increasingly desperate executives, who are paying thousands of dollars in upfront fees to phony executive-search firms. In general, “executive recruiters are paid by the companies, so if they are asking for your money, a red flag should go up,” Dominguez told the Journal.

Advice from the experts:

• Withhold some personal information on resumes posted online. Never supply Social Security numbers or bank account numbers. “In fact any competent job site will give you the option of hiding your personal information,” said Pam Dixon of the World Privacy Forum to

• Do not give out your mother’s maiden name. Some fraudsters know that information is often used as a security feature by banks and credit-card companies, Newsday reported.

• Do not pay for information. Some scammers are seeking upfront fees of $40 to $200 for what ends up being vague instructions on placing Internet ads.

• Never pay for referrals to . Go to instead. The pitch promising a good job at the U.S. Postal Service for a fee is a scam.

• Beware of work-at-home pitches involving medical billing, rebate processing or “secret shopper” jobs. Scams in these areas are on the rise.

Source: Staff Writer, AccountingWEB

© 2012 | Contact Us | Site Map | | | | About Us | Follow us

Related pages

resume qualification statementbank cfo jobstrade supervisor job descriptionstaff tax accountant resumebest business analyst resume samplecore competencies examples resumevendor relations manager job descriptioney cpe webcastspay expert adpsample resume for purchasercfo jobs canadasupply chain management resume samplecatering duties for resumepayroll officer duties and responsibilitiesaverage pay for staff accountantinvestment controller job descriptionbest business analyst resume samplecomptroller responsibilitiesgl accountant job descriptionrobert half accounting job descriptionshr analyst job description samplesample data analyst resumelead accountant salaryqualification of cfoaccount assistant resumecover letter for bookkeeper positionbookkeeper duties and responsibilitiescash office clerk job descriptionmeaning of account payable and receivabledirector of fp&a salarybookkeeping job responsibilitiesemployment appointment letter templategeneral ledger accounting examplesaccounts payable accomplishments examplesinventory job description resumesample of accountant cvaccounting firms in nycbook keeping dutiesresume accounts payablesample job appointment letter formatcpa job dutiesucflex loginjunior fund accountantaccounting bookkeeper job descriptionvavrinek trine day & coauditor cv exampleduties and responsibilities of a purchaseraccountant sample resumejob description of a cfodata entry cv samplescovering letter for cv accountantdifference between controller and accounting manageraccounting p&lcsr duties resumeaccounts payable resume formataccounts payable receivable job descriptionduties of a accounts receivable clerkchartway com onlinegeneral ledger accountant job descriptionpayroll manager job description samplepwc accountant salarytreasury operations manager job descriptionbookkeeping jobs mnadp major accounts salarydefinition of fund accountingproject accountant cover lettersimple sample resumesaccounting workpapersaccountancy contract jobsaccounts payable duties resumepurchasing job description resumehow to prepare cash flow statement from trial balancereceivable accountant job descriptionpayroll technician jobs