We’ve been made aware by our industry body, the Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC) that scams targeting the recruitment industry are on the rise and it’s important for recruiters to help raise awareness.
According to research recently released by NatWest Bank, nearly three-quarters of people have been targeted by scams in general within the last year. Of those surveyed, 80% were concerned that scams will become harder to spot over the next 5 years due to Artificial Intelligence (AI) and it’s capability to impersonate individuals.
Recruitment scams on the rise
One example of a common recruitment scam is for individuals to be targeted by a person posing as a Recruitment Consultant, luring them in with attractive sounding job opportunities – promising high salaries, remote working etc. in an attempt to con them out of money or to pass over personal financial information.
Some agencies have been targeted specifically, with scammers taking real Recruiters names and profile pictures from their websites and social media accounts, setting up fake profiles and contacting people by text, What’s App and email. Sometimes, very convincingly.
It’s estimated that over 100,000 people have so far been targeted with this sort of scam, which seems to be most prevalent in the UK, US, India and Singapore. The UK Government have ever created a new law enforcement body to help tackle this type of fraud specifically, called JobsAware. This shows just how big the scope of the issue is.
What you should do
Our advice would be to tread carefully if you receive unsolicited contact from anyone claiming to be from a Recruitment Agency – of course, it could be completely legitimate, but it’s always best call the business directly using the contact details on their website. Do not click on any links sent within any communication unless you’re sure the sender is who they say they are.
Remember – a recruiter’s services should always be free to the candidate. It’s illegal for a recruiter to charge a fee for their work finding services. Recruitment Agencies make their money by charging businesses, never candidates.
It is extremely disappointing to have our industry tarnished in this way when we help millions of people into temporary and permanent jobs, and contribute over £40 billion to the economy each year, but these types of scams can be extremely damaging to individuals so it’s important that we raise awareness.