How to Avoid Online Job Scams

As more and more employers are making the shift to listing potential jobs on online job boards instead of traditional media, it is becoming harder for job seekers to flesh out which ad postings are legitimate jobs and which are nothing more than a scam. Because job scams seem to be on the rise it’s imperative for job seekers to do some research ahead of time before applying for each and every job listing that seems to fit their criteria. Here are five tell-tale signs that the job you’re applying for might not actually be a real offer:

  1. The job requires a sign-up fee. No legitimate job will require its employees to pay for a position, and any that says they do is likely just after your money and will disappear once you’ve paid. No matter how good the offer sounds, if it requires a fee of any sort then it’s probably a scam. The employer is supposed to pay you; you aren’t supposed to pay the employer.
  2. There are misspellings in the ad. One way to spot scammers is frequent punctuation errors and word misspellings. This is because their postings are usually generated by a bot somewhere. Any respectable employer will take the time to post a well-written ad that has been proof-read ahead of time and is free from errors. And even if it isn’t a scam, do you really want to work for someone that doesn’t care enough to double check their ad posting for errors? Probably not.
  3. A quick internet search turns up the company’s name + the word scam. You should research any company you’re applying for ahead of time, and a quick internet search can usually tell you if it’s worth your time or not. If the search engine results generate the company’s name with any ties to being a scam it’s probably an ad that you want to skip responding to.
  4. The ad promises extreme profits in the first week. Anything guaranteeing that you’re going to make hundreds of thousands of dollars right off the bat is more than likely hoping to rope you in with the lure of quick riches and then scam you once you’ve taken the bait. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
  5. Red flag words. According to, there are specific words that typically show up in job listings on Monster that denote a job scam. These words are generally “package-forwarding”, “money transfers”, “wiring funds”, “eBay”, “PayPal”, and “Foreign Agent Agreement”. If any of these words turns up in the ad listing it’s time for you to move onto the next.

Don’t let the desire to find a new job cloud your vision when it comes to job scams. These warning signs are all indicative that the ad you’re reading and applying for is probably not there to provide you with an actual job, and is really just there to get your money or your identity.

About the Author:
This guest post is contributed by Debra Johnson, blogger and editor of nanny housekeeper. She welcomes your comments at her email Id: – jdebra84 @

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  1. Agree with your post, anything to good to be true must be just that

  2. Martin wambua says:

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  3. I want to ask is this site legit or has anyone tried it?

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