Scammers are attempting to steal money and personal information from job searchers through phishing tactics, including bogus advertising put on job boards. The warning was recently posted on the Bureau’s Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) as a Public Service Announcement (PSA).
The FBI advises that cyber attackers, often known as “scammers,” continue to take advantage of security flaws on job recruiting websites to publish fraudulent job listings to dupe candidates into supplying personal information or money. These scammers give their plan legitimacy by imitating firms with real information, jeopardizing the company’s image and the job seeker’s financial loss.
Scams like these have been active since early 2019, with average recorded losses of about $3,000 per victim, not to mention the harm done to victims’ credit scores. In January 2020, the federal law enforcement agency issued a similar warning, stating that cybercriminals had begun impersonating real organizations’ websites to steal money and Personally Identifiable Information (PII) from job seekers.
Scammers exploit the lack of robust security verification requirements on recruiting websites to post bogus job postings that seem identical to those published by the organizations they’re impersonating.
“Fraudulent job listings include links and contact information that direct applicants to spoofed websites, email addresses, and phone numbers controlled by the scammers where the applicant’s personal information can be stolen and then sold or used in additional scams,” as explained by the FBI.
The FBI urges job searchers to double-check job advertising obtained on social media platforms by contacting the company’s HR department or visiting the company’s official website. After confirming their identity, they should also only submit PII and financial information in person or through video conference.
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) also has information on how these types of employment scams operate, as well as the warning indicators that job seekers can look for to know whether they’re being targeted. If you become a victim of a fraud like this, contact IC3 at www.ic3.gov or your local FBI field office (a list may be found at http://www.fbi.gov/contact-us/field-offices).