Scam of the day – January 24, 2016 – Arrest made in phony job identity theft scheme

Sharif King was recently indicted in New York on fifteen charges related to allegations that he operated an identity theft scheme in which he posted advertisements for job openings for “Upstate Family Transport LLC” and then required a job applicant to provide him with personal information including his  Social Security number under the guise of needing the information for employment purposes, but instead used the information to steal the job applicant’s identity and purchased a $58,000 Mercedes Benz using his victim’s identity.  Just last June, King was charged in a similar scheme in which he allegedly interviewed job applicants for a non-existent record label “Dower Music Entertainment LLC” and then used the information provided by the job applicants to obtain credit cards.

TIPS

Always do research on any company for which you are considering working to make sure that they are legitimate.  Find out if they have a physical address and see if they have any history of fraud.  It is also important to remember that no prospective employer needs your Social Security number until you have been hired for the job and you should also restrict the amount of other personal information, such as your birth date or driver’s license number that you provide a prospective employer that are not needed early in the job application process or ever, in many instances.

Scam of the day – September 26, 2015 – Employment recruiter scams

Searching for a job is much easier today with all of the resources of the Internet, however, unfortunately, it is also easier for scammers to search for victims posing as employment recruiters using the resources of the Internet.  The phony recruiters often reach out to people on social media such as LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook.  Many people provide personal information to these scammers who then use that information to make the job seeker a victim of identity theft.  Often the scammers will copy the logo of legitimate companies so that their emails may look legitimate.

TIPS

As I always say, “trust me, you can’t trust anyone.”  You can never be sure when you receive an email, text message or communication by way of social media who is really contacting you.  For this reason, you should never provide personal information to a recruiter unless you have absolutely confirmed they are legitimate.  You can do this by contacting the HR department of the real company they may only be pretending to represent.   Real job postings can also be found on the websites of legitimate companies so if someone claims to be recruiting for a company that does not list such a job as being offered by the company on its website, you can expect that the recruiter is a scammer or identity thief.