Some job scams are easy to spot while others appear legitimate. So how do you know who to trust? You can start with these basic guidelines to avoid a potential scam.
- Never give out personal information like your social security or bank account number over email or phone.
- Never take cashier’s checks or money orders as a form of payment. Fake checks are common and the bank where you cash it will hold you accountable.
- Never cash a check that comes with “extra” money and do not buy gift cards and send bar codes at an employer's request. Scammers send checks that require you to deposit a check at your bank, withdraw the “extra” money as cash, and then deposit that cash elsewhere. The check will bounce and you will be held accountable.
- Never wire funds via Western Union, MoneyGram or any other service. Anyone who asks you to wire money is a scammer.
- Never apply for jobs listed by someone far away or in another country.
- Never agree to a background check unless you have met the employer in person.
- Never apply for a job that is emailed to you out of the blue.
- Be skeptical. If a job is offering a lot of money for very little work, it could be a scammer trying to get personal information from you.
- Research the employer. Do they have a reputable website or professional references? Is the job listing you want to apply for also on their main career page? Note: work-study jobs may not be advertised on employer websites.
- Meet face-to-face with a potential employer. An in person interview or informal chat over coffee will help you determine the employer’s intentions.
- Be sure to choose a public place to meet, tell someone where you are going and bring your cell phone, just in case.
- Trust your instincts. If a job sounds too good to be true, it is likely a scam.
Job Scam Scenario
Visit the Federal Trade Commission for more examples and signs of job scam.
Recent Scam Alert
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Reporting Fraud & Scam
If you think a job listing on the CU Boulder Student Job Database is suspicious, let us know! We can remove the job posting and alert our CU Police Department.
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