Job hunters beware: Hustlers have your number - Albuquerque Journal

Job hunters beware: Hustlers have your number

Copyright © 2020 Albuquerque Journal

If you’re looking for a job online, an Albuquerque woman tells a cautionary tale about how her husband got duped during a vulnerable time in his life.

He had used a number of sites to help him become employed again, including

Ellen Marks/For the Journal

craigslist, his wife said.

“He was thrilled” when he got an official-looking email from DHL, the global shipping company, saying he would be hired but needed to send $95 via PayPal to cover the cost of a background check. It also said he would receive a separate invitation to an employee orientation. If he agreed, he would be repaid the money at the gathering.

You guessed it. He never received the invitation and was out the money. And his wife was really angry.

“They take advantage of the most vulnerable people – people who are looking for a job and can’t afford to lose so much money,” she said. “I hope it doesn’t happen to anyone else.”

A DHL spokeswoman said this scam has become so prevalent that the company has added a warning on its website. Other versions include asking payment to cover administration costs or demanding the job-seeker’s Social Security number, spokeswoman Bea Garcia said.

DHL does none of these things, Garcia said, and the same goes for job recruiters it hires. The lesson? Use extreme caution if you’re going the online route to seek employment.

For example, it’s a red flag when you receive an emailed response saying you need to pay something to get a particular job. It could be for training materials, certification or a background check.

And watch for “on-the-spot job offers,” the Better Business Bureau advises. “You may be an excellent candidate for the job, but beware of offers made without an interview. A real company will want to talk to a candidate before hiring.”

Also, if the offer comes from a well-known company, check out its job page to see if the position is posted.

A warning if you’re thinking about working for the 2020 Census: don’t pay someone to help you get one of these jobs.

Scammers lie to people about the availability of census jobs, then charge a fee to help them get hired, according to the U.S. Census Bureau and the Federal Trade Commission. The two agencies have joined forces to limit the number of people who fall for this.

“Anyone who asks for a fee to help you get a Census Bureau job is a scammer,” according to a news release. “In fact, you never have to pay for information about job vacancies or employment opportunities with the U.S. government.”

The only way to apply is to complete an online application at There are a variety of positions available, and pay varies according to job and location.

You will need to provide your Social Security number, home address, email address, phone number and date and place of birth. Just make sure you’re on the official website before you give out these details.

Contact Ellen Marks at or 505-823-3842 if you are aware of what sounds like a scam. To report a scam to law enforcement, contact the New Mexico Consumer Protection Division toll-free at 1-844-255-9210​.


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