With jobless growth becoming the order of the day for India Inc; job rackets are on the rise.
Dozens of fake job consultants are on the prowl across the country exploring ways to sell thousands of non-existing career offers—in IT, aviation/airline, BFSI, healthcare, retail, education and other verticals—to job seekers who are desperate for their first job or for the next career change. The modus operandi is simple and seems super convincing. The scamsters use fake letterheads, email-IDs and websites of top lead companies to trap as many innocent job seekers as possible. India’s second larg?est online recruiter, Shine-com, alone reports some 5-10 such frauds every month in the last two years as opposed to just 5-10 cases for the whole year in the past. Here’s an example of how it happened to bank employee, Krishna Shylam, 29. He received an employment call from a rival bank (name withheld). The caller, who introduced herself as talent-in-charge for Bangalore, said she found his CV on a job site and her bank would like to hire him.
The call came as a respite for Shylam who was desperately looking for a job change. A few days later, the same caller organised a tele-interview for him with a “senior bank officer’’ in Mumbai. The very next day he received an email from the bank informing him that he had been shortlisted. Later, he was called for a final interview to a business centre in Bangalore and an offer letter, printed in the letterhead of a particular bank, was given to him. Shylam was a happy man that he landed a much smarter and a better paying job. The very same day he received another email from the bank asking him to pay up Rs 17,574 towards fees for processing his CV, interviews and background checks. Not so convincing about the fee part, he called up the Mumbai office of the bank. To his shock, he was told the bank never contacted him, neither conducted any interviews nor made a job offer.
Krishna Shylam was fortunate to escape the trap. Several others, however, have lost money, and some even paid Rs 50,000 to Rs 100,000 to get jobs and got duped.
Zairus Master, CEO of Shine.com, said that in order to make the application more authentic the scammers create websites that imitate the original companies that they claim they represent and provide phone numbers so that victims can call the numbers to verify theapplications.
“Scammers typically ask candidates to make a small deposit for registration or background verification, and follow it up by demanding a larger sum to schedule the interview and another sum for the final placement. When candidates object, they say that the money is for ‘security only’ and will be refunded once the interview is complete. Once the fee is paid, these scamsters are nowhere to be traced,” said Master.
Shine.com has recently launched an awareness programme, on print and social media, to warn job seekers in the country against these threats.
“Job seekers should be extremely cautious. Always remember that no authentic recruiter or consultant will ever ask the candidates to submit registration fees to schedule an interview or conduct background check. If someone asks you to pay money for a job, simply disconnect the call,” cautioned Master.
BS Murthy, CEO of Leadership Capital, a lead hirer in Bangalore said, “Jobs have vanished from the market. Freshers, senior executives and top executives are struggling. This is the ideal situation for unscrupulous elements to kick in and thrive. Fortunately, most people get a warning signal once they hear about the fee element.”
Again, the scam is not restricted within India. The dupers also offer international jobs especially in the UAE/West Asia region, Australia, Canada etc and try to collect huge sum of money towards work visas, sponsorships and offer letters.