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For all of you who are posting your resume’s on Monster, Craigslist, or any other online job search website, be very careful from any replies you receive. There is a new scam going around, and here is how it works:

You will receive an E-mail advising you they are interested in interviewing you for a position, but before they can do this you must pass a background check and a credit check. They will provide you a link for you to obtain your credit report from CreditReport.com. The link is a bogus link, but it will appear to be the official website for CreditReport.com. Here’s a real E-mail that was received regarding this scam. I have removed the person’s real name and E-mail address, and used a fake name and E-mail address for security purposes. It is the only changes that I have made to the E-mail:

Subject: Re: Outstanding Data Entry/Filing Clerk – Ima Fake
From: [email protected]
To: [email protected]
Date: Wed, 31 Mar 2010 15:01:51 -0700

Dear Ms.,

We’ve taken some time to look through the applications. And we’ve decided we’d love to have you as a part of our team! We’d like you to come in sometime before the end of the week for a face-to-face interview. This is for the Data Entry/Filing Clerk position, with compensation starting at $35,550 a year plus a benefit package which includes health, medical, dental and 401k after 30 days of employment.

We are REQUIRED to run credit and background checks on all our employees, due to the nature of the work and also due to sensitive documents and materials that will be easily accessible to you.

The credit check can be done now via this link: http://bit.ly/aEbnNW It’s free, no worries. We are also not judging your score, like I previously said, this is just a security requirement. After you have taken the credit check, send us the confirmation code via e-mail, and we’ll set up an interview right away. We do not want to see any sensitive or private info via e-mail and the background check will be taken at our face-to-face interview.

For any questions, feel free to e-mail me. I am looking forward to speaking with you in person!

Sarah Murphy

So, what are the Red Flags about this E-mail?

In the Subject line it shows the name of the person they are contacting about this job opportunity, and in whom they have a high degree of interest in interviewing.

The From Line shows a free E-mail account, not an account from the company doing their hiring.

The Salutation is Ms, yet they know your name but don’t use it.

You do not run a credit and background check on a potential employee until they are ready to make an offer, which means after your interview. Why would a company incur these costs on a potential employee before they even know if they want to hire them? They don’t.

The link they provide for CreditReport.com is an invalid URL. Nowhere in this link they provide does the name CreditReport.com appear. The official website for CreditReport.com is http://creditreport.com. They use: http://bit.ly/aEbnNW.

Nowhere in this E-mail do they mention the name of the company, where the company is located, or what are the hours of the job. Things you would want to know before setting an interview.

The person signing the E-mail does not provide her: Job Title, Telephone Number, or any contact information. Any HR person would have their title and all their contact information in their signature line.

If you should fall prey to this scam, you will be a victim of Identity Theft. Please contact your bank, credit card companies, and all three credit reporting agencies IMMEDIATELY! Tell them to put a fraud alert on your accounts.

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