How to spot fake job advertisement?

What is a fake job ad?

A fake job posting is a smartly designed type of scam aimed at job seekers for a variety of unprofessional reasons.

The actual problems arise when these fake advertisements are used to collect personal data or even money and crime.

Types of job search scams

Career advancement grants

This scam is more focused on many job seekers who want or need to gain extra education or specific certifications for their careers.

In this, you’ll usually receive an email asking you to apply online for a career advancement grant that comes from the government and can be directly deposited into your account if approved.

Fake URLs

Scammers try to recreate the company’s website by slightly altering the web address.

If you’re not aware, you may not realize that you’re on a scam website.

Generally, when you look at a fake website, the address is If there’s even a slight change, this indicates that you’re not on the company’s real website.

Communicating through chat

Scammers often use instant messaging to communicate with you and conduct fake job interviewers with job seekers.

If you have applied through chat, make sure to request a call, and do your research before interviewing to see if the advertising is actually fake or real.

Inviting on Google Doc

Pay very close attention to the email used to send you the doc and any links that may be included.

These scams typically provide a link for you to click on which says “start earning now.”

How can you identify a fake job advertisement?

Companies asking for payment

Any listed job that asks you to pay any amount, big or small, is definitely a scam. Remember, no trustworthy company asks you for money in return for a job. If this happens, that means it’s a red flag for you. Grammatical errors and poorly written content

If a job listing contains typos, grammatical errors, and poorly written content, be aware. Bad content is the ultimate red flag. 

When job postings have no photos of the company’s building and actual location, be aware as it’s likely a scam.

Consider questions like, Do they communicate clearly and professionally? If the company has a profile on LinkedIn?  You can also check whether a company is legitimate

Asking for personal information 

If a job advertisement asks for the personal information of any kind, just ignore it because it’s likely a scam.

It is understandable to share your email address and phone number for getting in touch but it is not a good idea to disclose your bank account details, your identification numbers

With so many identity thefts on the rise, it is important to protect your information carefully and be aware at all times.

Unrealistic job advertisements

These are job listings or ads that mention “100% genuine payments”, “unlimited earnings” or “earn up to a lakh while sitting at home.”  

These types of adverts are unrealistic and to expect a job to pay huge amounts of money for a minimal amount of work is impossible. 

It is important to again verify job sites that you use and carefully check their privacy policies.  In these times, young job hunters are vulnerable to these kinds of exploitation.

Trust your instinct and look for the red flags and take action.

Summing up

  • Fake job ads are 100% real and they’re not always easy to spot. You may or may not even have applied for one before without the slightest doubts for a specific company.
  • If you can’t verify a phone number, location, web address, or employee, you’re definitely looking at a scam. Nowadays, real companies will have an online presence and some social media engagement.
  • One way that job scams work is by asking candidates to hand over money for fake checks, nonsense admin fees, and non-existent training. These job ads typically ask for something like a ‘payment processing agent’ and around 15% of people have experienced an advert of this type.
  • It turns out that for all Gen Z’s tech savviness, only 17% of students and graduates have any awareness of online job fraud.

Frequently Asked Questions

Most frequent questions and answers

What are the signs of a fake job posting?

It is very easy to find fake job posting, they all have following things in common

  • You receive a job offer right away
  • The pay is extremely high
  • Job requirements and descriptions are vague
  • The company requires payment from you
  • The job promises that you’ll get wealthy fast

How can you identify fake company adverts?

  • Mentioning of unrealistic job skills
  • Inadequate contact information
  • No mention of social media profiles

How can I verify if a company is legitimate?

You can check out the company’s address, phone number, and website to make sure they look legitimate.
or you can visit the company’s physical address and talk to the people who work there.

Can I sue a company for false job advertising?

Yes, there are laws that forbid companies from misleading consumers with deceptive product labels or false advertisements.