Protect Against Identity Theft

Searching for a job offers identity thieves a rich source of personal information and a pool of potential victims. People tend to be most vulnerable when looking for work. But don’t send your transcripts to just anyone. Confirm! Confirm! Confirm that the company is legitimate. Beware of potential employers that use “blind” help wanted ads in newspapers or on the Web. Don’t divulge personal information to unknown sources in hopes of landing employment. Unfortunately, not all employment ads are legitimate.

Scammers solicit personal information by the offer of employment. The job seeker, who may be desperate or vulnerable, is required to fill out an application wherein they divulge sensitive personal information, such as their date of birth, Social Security number and current address. Or they are asked to provide an official transcript that may contain the same sensitive personal information. The scammer then uses that personal information to obtain credit and purchase merchandise (steal identity).

Basically, it’s a form of false advertising. Positions are falsely posted and people are taken advantage of. And your transcript may contain enough data to steal your identity. Do not send your transcripts to unknown sources. You may be setting yourself up for identify theft. Send your transcript only to known and trusted companies that you are familiar with. A legitimate company will clearly identify themselves.

Online recruiting business giants like Monster.com, CareerBuilder.com and HotJobs.com caution users about false online job listings, sometimes posted by identity thieves, to steal personal data for scams from unsuspecting job seekers.

A legitimate company does not require official transcripts and sensitive personal information during the initial round of application. Do not give any personal information until you are confident that you have applied with a reputable company and wait until after a job offer is made - when they normally do a background check.