This week Immigration Matters repeated our warning to beware of fake job offers and scams being emailed to thousands of desperate job hunters hoping to work abroad.
Since the article was published we have received a large number of emails from victims of scams and recent attempted frauds.
Examples of recent reader comments:
I am a recent new victim of the fake job offer in Taiwan. After realizing myself as a victim I researched related fraud crime on the internet, and discover that the criminals have also committed other related crime in the same case such as ‘ID thief’, ‘advance fee’…etc. The bank Western Union is crucial in the crime, that I just learned that with only Western Union’s receipt copy, the criminals can pick up the money with fake ID. Western Union has changed the way we use the banks, people should be warned of the way Western Union let their customers pick up the money with only receipt copy with fake ID. I would like to participate in the BBC documentary with my story if it helps to raise awareness and stop further crime.
Can you please help me to verify? I am offered a job of a nanny by Brigadier Anthony Howards residing in 61 Tudor Close, Brixton Hills, SW2 1HT London UK. He said i have to make payment of half of the visa procurement to Travel Document System with address 31 New Cavendish Street, London W1G, 8JR, UK. Please help me verify, before i make any payment. Thank you very much.
For further information check the article – Beware of fake job offers and internet scams
6 ways to spot a fake job offer
Here are six useful tips from Cynthia Barker, Manager of London based immigration firm Bison UK. Cynthia, who has helped thousands of workers and students come to the UK, said there are a number of questions you should first ask yourself when looking at employment offers.
- Is the recruitment method unusual or suspicious?
Companies do not hire workers by sending unsolicited emails and in countries like the Philippines recruitment of workers is regulated by government agencies such as the POEA. Genuine employers will usually interview candidates or use a reputable agency.
- Has the job been advertised through legitimate media in the UK?
Jobs advertised to foreign or non EU workers are normally be advertised on the official Job Centre Plus website and in some cases in the press. If not, the employer will be unable to obtain permission to employ the worker under Tier 2 of the Points Based System. See http://www.jobcentreplus.gov.uk/. Remember, anyone can set up a website, so you need to look further than an internet based advertisement.
- Is the Job of the official Shortage Occupation list?
If the job is not a shortage occupation the chances of obtaining a certificate of sponsorship is greatly reduced.
- Does the post qualify under Tier 2?
The job role must be at or above NVQ Level 3, otherwise the employer will not be allowed to employ you and you will not get a visa to enter the UK. See Working in the UK. For instance, a Waiter or Cleaner will be considered at below NVQ Level 3 and will not qualify under Tier 2.
- Does the employment letter contain a UK landline and address?
Most of the letters we see do not have landline telephone numbers (e.g. with the prefix 0208 or 01707) and many have PO Box addresses or addresses which simply do not exist. A few minutes on the internet on sites like Royal Mail Postcode Finder or Google Maps should reveal all you need to know.
- Have you been asked to send money?
UK employers and UK agencies are not allowed to charge placement fees, even though this practice may be acceptable in many countries which supply staff to the UK. If you are asked to send money for any reason this is the first sign that you are being sucked into a scam or confidence trick.
What else can you do to avoid being conned?
- Research the company – use websites such as Companies House and Yell.com.
- Look at the company website – check if job vacancies are advertised
- Call or email the head office or HR department direct and inform them of the offer.
- Check the email address – most fraudsters use free Yahoo or Hotmail account rather than an in-house ‘.com’ or ‘.co.uk’ domain.
- Ask a friend or relative (if you have one in the UK) to call or visit the employer.
- Contact your Embassy in London or your local labour department.
- Set up a spam filter – a good spam filter will usually spot the emails as spam and save you time and money.
Finally, use your judgement and common sense – if something seems too good to be true it probably is.
Have you received a fake job offer? The BBC are making a special documentary about these scams and would like to hear your story.
You can comment on this story below.
If you need any immigration advice or help with Sponsorship or Work Permits, Visa or an appeal against a refusal please email:
UK Border Agency – Sponsoring Migrant Workers