The Job Interview Scam

    November 19, 2002

Be careful of potential job offers – there are scams that are being run and are taking advantage of your good trust in the postings and offers. They attempt to steal proprietary information from unsuspecting “candidates.”

This is how one scam operates – the position posting gets published in the newspaper or other areas that post jobs, and it reads like a normal posting offer. There is contact information, a full description, a company name, and everything to make you feel comfortable with the job.

Then if you look like a good candidate, you get an “interview” – during which they ask you to explain how you would deal with a certain situation. They act impressed and then start asking you to actually show how to solve a problem – which just happens to be one they are experiencing.

They start to ask you for professional contacts and purchasers you have worked with. They tell you that you need to produce at least a minimum of X contacts, and more is better.

You get invited to do more problem solving, and they try to get you to give up your secrets and talents in this problem. Little do you know you are being pumped for all this information for FREE and a consultant would be making a large fee for the same!

They just got everything out of you that they needed, so they will now figure out a reason to let you down – you didn’t make the cut, or they ran out of funding for the position, or some other excuse. Meanwhile, if you think about it, you realize you were scammed by professionals. Everything about the operation seemed legitimate.

There are variations to this routine. It may follow the entire course or just portions. In any case, they are looking to pull information from you – at your expense. Sometimes they ask for proprietary information. Be wary – and guarded. Do not offer more than you are willing, able and allowed to give out. Would you want to work for a company as this? Would it really hurt you to be refused? Chances are you will be refused after they get the information from you. If you don’t give it, they’ll go after someone else. They aren’t intended to actually hire anyone. They are just stealing information.

P. Roe does website optimization work, and is working on her sites all the time – many are in number 1-10 ranking on Google and Yahoo! Subscribe to “Wise Little Tidbits” for more optimization tips.