How to spot red flags during your job search

FTC offers tips to protect job seekers from scammers

KSAT12's Ivan Herrera gives some advice on how job seekers can avoid potential job scams.
KSAT12's Ivan Herrera gives some advice on how job seekers can avoid potential job scams.

SAN ANTONIO – Help wanted signs are popping up around town and through job posting websites, giving San Antonians many options to find a new gig. But sometimes, looks can be deceiving if you miss the red flags on a job bulletin.

The Federal Trade Commission has the following tips to help protect job seekers from scammers.

First, start your search with reliable sources, like the CareerOneStop website, which is sponsored by the U.S. Department of Labor and features job listings in the public and private sectors.

Next, if you’re looking to use a job placement service, do your research to make sure the staffing company or employment agency is reputable.

The FTC says some scammers may pretend to be legitimate recruiters and claim they have an inside track on dream jobs or hot companies.

If a placement service or recruiter asks you for money to help you land a job, avoid them. Prospective employers typically pay legitimate firms to find local talent.

The FTC also warns to view work-from-home offers with suspicion as some con artists may try to lure people in with bogus offers. If a job poster asks you to shell out money for a starter kit or training, you may be dealing with a scammer.

Evaluate the company and talk about the offer with someone you trust before shelling out any money.

Finally, the FTC says beware of be-your-own boss pitches. Some may begin with free online or in-person seminars that dangle the bait of a lavish lifestyle. If a job poster requires you to drop some cash for more courses or training, don’t fall victim.

If you spot a scam, report it at reportfraud.ftc.gov and to the Texas Attorney General’s Office.


About the Author:

Ivan Herrera has worked as a journalist in San Antonio for five years. Before living in SA, Ivan covered border news in the Rio Grande Valley.