Monday, January 19, 2009

All that glitters...

As the old saying goes "All that glitters is not gold." You can also say that sometimes things are too good to be true. This can happen on a job search as well. With the advent of the Internet, more and more people can get their message out to the general public and sometimes that message is not legitimate.

When searching public job boards such as Craig's List, keep in mind some general safety tips. The following were compiled by Yahoo! Hotjobs.

Yahoo! HotJobs takes security very seriously and does a number of things to help protect job seekers from fraud. Despite our best efforts, some fraudulent listings may appear on our site from time to time. Thus it is very important that users take common sense precautions to protect themselves:

Never give out personal financial information such as your bank account or credit card number to a potential employer.

Do not give out your social security number unless you are filling out a job application for an employer at their offices. Be wary if you are asked to give your social security number by phone, email, or online.

Do not accept any cashier's check, money orders or any other offer to cash checks for someone.

Never wire money via Western Union or any other money wiring service to a potential employer.

Carefully research companies before sending any information to them. Look up the company's name in an Internet search and get comfortable that they are a legitimate company.

If you have doubts about a company's legitimacy, research the company using Web sites operated by the Better Business Bureau and the United States Federal Trade Commission.

If you think information about you may have been used illegally, report the details to your local police immediately.

Yahoo! Hotjobs also recommends if you see anything posted on their site that appears to be fraudulent, contact their customer support department. Craig's List also has an easy way to flag information that seems to be less than legitimate.

Internet tools are a great resource to finding position, but just remember that not everyone on the Internet is who they say they are. Use a common sense approach.