Job Scams: I Got A New Job Today. One problem, I Never Applied

If something sounds too good to be true; it’s more than likely it is. This is not the first time this has happened to me, nor can I imagine it will be the last. The problem is that I can see it’s a fake job, but lots of people don’t, and it can cause significant problems.

A typical job search starts with full-on enthusiasm and ideas, however, after a couple of months, this enthusiasm can quickly turn into desperation, especially if you don’t have a job, but are still trying to support your family. Desperation leads to leads to candidates doing silly things which is where job spammers often take advantage of the situation to profit for themselves.

My story

I received the below email announcing that my experience and qualifications were successful for a job at the Turkish Petroleum International Company and that I was going to be offered a Talent Manager Job working in their Head Office.

Job Scams

Not only would they pay for my housing, children’s education, but I would get a 23,000 Euro salary per month and an extra 500 Euro weekly for “pocket allowance”. The alarm bells rang instantly that this was most likely a scam, however, I played along.

My first question was to ask for a job description. A few days later, I got the below email with what looks like a relevant job description. I also received a note from Mr Bogachan Osman, Hr Manager who asked me to send my signed contract back to him, which of course I duly did.

It Looked Almost Perfect

Two days later, Mt Bogachan followed up with a very nice email talking about my onboarding and how I was going to start with the company as soon as possible. He also discussed how they were finalising my visa as we spoke, and I just needed to pay $79.99 to a Western Union Address to secure the visa.

This where the alarm bells started ringing and I stopped all communications.

Watch Out For The Following

  • Personal Information – Your mobile number and email address should be the only thing you’re giving out to anyone other than a company you’ve interviewed for and trust explicatable. Make sure you don’t submit any personal information such as social security number, passport number, driver’s license detail or even email login information to a recruiter or a random
  • No Experience Necessary – All jobs require some experience. If the job doesn’t require any expertise and pays well, it’s more than likely a scam. There no way a company is going to hire you into a position, pay you an excellent salary and training if you have no experience.
  • Company Email’s – All companies will use their corporate email. If you get an email from a Hotmail or Gmail account, it’s a scam where they are trying to extract information to use against you.
  • Company Review Websites – If you’re unsure whether the company exists, you can always check for recommendations using company review sites such as Glassdoor. If you enter the company name and nothing is shown, it should be a significant red flag that something is not quite right. Its may be the case that the company is simply a start-up and your its first employee, but in combination with a few others in this list, should cause you concern. A Gmail email address and no company record on Glassdoor says to me. It’s a scam.
  • Job Boards – I’m a big fan of Niche Job Boards that specialise specifically in one sector of the job market. One of my favourite examples of this is, however, niche job boards are a breeding ground for scammers to take advantage of you. The problem with a job board is that you need to upload your CV to it. While uploading your CV, an experienced IT professional can easily access your computer and either take anything that on it or see what you’re doing on your computer.
  • The Pay is Too Good – I believe you’re paid what you’re worth. Yes there are exceptions, and some will be paid slightly more, and some slightly less, but generally each position at a company has a salary that is reflective of the skills needs for that role. If the salary seems too good, it’s a scam. In my example above, 25,500 Euro’s per month is good 40% above what even the largest the salaries for a Talent Acquisition Manager position. I would find it very difficult to believe that a company is going to pay 300K Euro for a TA Manager.
  • You Didn’t Apply – In my example above, the company stated they had found my CV online. This might be true, as my CV is online, but for a lot of targets, their CV is not even online. The scammer has found their email address online and targeted them using it.
  • No Job Interview – We’ve talked a lot about job interview preparation and the importance of building rapport with the hiring manager. No hiring manager is ever going to hire you without at the very least knowing what skills you have and whether you can fit into the team dynamics.


Job Scams are real. Never send money to either a company, a recruitment company or a job board without doing your research. Companies will not charge you for your application, recruiters will not charge you to use their services, and job boards should not charge you to access their jobs. If you’re asked to pay for a job search-related service, it’s likely to be a scam.

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Nick Jones

My name Nick Jones, I am a professional Head-Hunter with over 20 years of experience working all over the world. I specialise in out-of-the-box job search strategies to get your CV directly to the hiring manager, thus skipping any ATS portals or recruiters who think they're important.

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