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Recruitment fraud advisory from WRS

Posted by: Francis Dunleavy

At WRS we take the growing risks of recruitment fraud seriously, and as such, have created the following advisory which, outlines what the potential pitfalls are and how to avoid becoming a victim. This list is by no means exhaustive and should be used as a guide only.

What is recruitment fraud?
Although there are many types of recruitment fraud, in essence it is when someone creates and advertises a job listing which is not genuine, to illegally collect an applicant’s personal data or request money. Fraudsters may use a range of communications to do this including email, fake websites or job posts.
Avoiding recruitment fraud
As mentioned earlier, the goal of the fraudsters is generally to gain access to either personal information or money. In order to encourage applicants to divulge personal information, fraudsters will ask applicants to share information including:

 - Passport / ID numbers
 - National Insurance / Social security numbers
- Bank details
- A direct request for money.

Commonly, the reasons offered for making these requests are as follows:

 - Pay for training materials
- To set up a company account or check
- Paying for travel to an interview or job location
- Paying for visa-processing fees for foreign relocations or insurance.

Checking authenticity

To avoid falling victim to recruitment fraud there are some simple steps that you can follow to check the authenticity of the job and the company who have advertised the role:

 - Research the company thoroughly - search online, check the company’s credentials and whether it is registered with an industry body such as APSCo, check online forums to see if anyone has experience of dealing with the company or has had similar job offers.
 - Be wary of providing any personal or sensitive information - reputable companies will not ask for this kind of information up front. 
- Never pay over money to a recruitment agent - if they are asking for money then, they are unlikely to be legitimate.
- Be wary of any job ads or emails that are riddled with spelling and grammar mistakes – this is a sign that the communication is fraudulent.
- Check the domain name used for the company’s website and email address - if the offer is coming from a generic address like Gmail or Yahoo, it is most likely not a legitimate source.
- It’s unlikely that a company will hire anyone without a rigorous recruitment process involving several interviews and other reference checks - any company that is supposedly prepared to hire you immediately without following a set application process is not likely to be genuine.
Although it can be time consuming, it’s essential to gather as much information as possible, in order to make an informed decision about whether or not a job offer is real. Remember, if it sounds to good to be true, then it probably is!

If you would like to contact a member of the WRS team to discuss any concerns or to get any other recruitment advice please email us at and a member of our team will be happy to help.

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