Whether it’s looking for a new job or keeping a professional resume for others to see, there are plenty of reasons why LinkedIn has risen in popularity. It’s a popular social media showcase to present all academic and professional accomplishments within the workplace. However, it is also a popular place for LinkedIn scams.
Scammers know that this is a prime place to look for victims. They know which people are successful financially due to their professional and educational history being broadcasted all over this social media platform. Because of this, they try to find many ways to steal someone’s hard-earned income by messaging their victims and telling them lies.
How Do Scammers Get Away with LinkedIn Scams?
- They contact you about something other than a job. If someone wants to get to know you romantically or on a friendly level and isn’t interested in offering you a job, then don’t message them back. LinkedIn is specifically about finding a job and if you are looking for a friend or a significant other, you’re supposed to go on dating sites. It is suspicious when someone flirts with you off the bat on LinkedIn since this is a sign they want to move into a relationship super fast with you and steal your money.
- They offer you a job without even knowing you. If someone offers you a job out of nowhere without any interviews or an interview that doesn’t seem right, then question if that job is right for you. Scammers usually do this so that they can offer you fake checks to cash in and give them a portion of the money, or to steal your financial information to take your money, both of which are illegal.
- They hack your friends’ accounts and send you links out of nowhere. If you aren’t used to your LinkedIn buddies sending you links and you get one out of nowhere, do not click on it even if it is a Google Doc. Scammers can put viruses and malware on these random links to steal your information and your hard-earned finances.
- You get an email from tech support saying your account has been compromised. Scammers love to pretend that they are someone else to get your money, and on LinkedIn, there’s no exception. If you find yourself getting that shocking message from tech support saying that your account was compromised, contact customer service immediately to make sure it was actually from tech support. Also, do not click on any links on this email.
- You get a message saying you inherited a million dollars. Haven’t we all seen this scam before? Even though it’s on LinkedIn versus an Email, it is still a scam. Do not believe anyone who says that you won money if you didn’t enter a contest. Most likely, they will either offer you a bad check or try to steal your financial information.
- You get a message saying something that’s too good to be true. Just like the message that says you won a million dollars, if you get a similar message with “too good to be true” information then it is probably false. Do not believe every message you receive off of LinkedIn. If it doesn’t make sense, then chances are the message is fake.
- There are a lot of grammatical mistakes. If someone has to insert their periods in the middle of their sentences or words aren’t spelled correctly, this could mean they are a scammer.
- They ask for personal information. If someone asks for your address, phone number, email address, social security number, or financial information, then end the conversation with them. They aren’t interested in giving you a job at that point, they are interested in stealing your money.
How to Avoid LinkedIn Scams
- Do not respond to messages that aren’t professional. If someone is flirting with you, hit that block button. You don’t need to be getting into a relationship on LinkedIn, that is what dating apps are for.2.
- Do not accept or apply to any jobs that seem sketchy. If the job offer has grammatical errors, makes you enter personal information, has never been heard of, or has “too good to be true” descriptions, avoid it. Especially if you have had interviews that asked for personal information, or are told you got the job without an interview at all.
- Do not click on any suspicious links. If you’re not used to someone sending you a link or it looks suspicious, don’t open the link. It could contain viruses and malware that will hack your computer and steal your vital information.
- Contact LinkedIn Customer Service directly if you receive a tech support email. Since scammers love pretending to be tech support, contact LinkedIn’s official customer service to see if it was actually tech support that emailed you. If it wasn’t, report the message or email immediately to LinkedIn’s website.
- Do not believe messages that contain “too good to be true” information. If you get any messages that claim you won a lot of money or prizes from a contest you never entered, or you get a job offer that has way more benefits than the usual job, then ignore the message and block the sender.
- Be wary of those who have poor grammar. If someone’s grammar is so bad that you can’t understand what they are writing, then be wary of this person’s intentions.
- Do not tell anyone on LinkedIn any personal information. It is a giant red flag if someone wants to know your address, financial information, or social security number. There should be no reason that you would give anyone this information, so avoid it at all costs.
Basically, be careful when job hunting on LinkedIn and only trust those who give you the correct gut feeling. If one of these tips match the person you are talking to, keep a close eye out and do not give them any money or accept any sketchy jobs whatsoever. If you think you’ve been talking to a scammer, you can report any LinkedIn scams to the site by reporting the scammer’s profile. You can also reverse search for any information you have gotten from this person on Social Catfish.
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