How to Identify and Avoid Scam Job Posts

The danger of seeking out any content on the internet, including job postings, is that there is always a chance you will encounter a scam. At Simply Hired, we use reasonable efforts to investigate every suspicious job post we become aware of, to protect job seekers from potential fraud.

Despite our efforts to ensure job quality, the amount and variety of content posted on Simply Hired each day makes it impossible for us to catch every offender. That’s why it’s essential that you as the job seeker remain vigilant in your search efforts. Watch out for these warning signs and always report any suspicious job posts you find on our site.

Here are some questions to ask and some tips to follow when it comes to distinguishing fake job postings from legitimate job content that you find online.

1. Is the job too good to be true?

If a job posting looks too good to be true, it generally is. Promises of signing bonuses, unlimited earning potential, work-at-home contracts, etc. are often just ploys that encourage job seekers to give up personal information. There are definitely exceptions to this rule. Do your research on sites like Better Business Bureau and Ripoff Report to see if anyone else has complained about scams run by the company.

Is the job trying to sell itself to you?

All a job posting needs is the facts about the job and the company. If a job includes marketing language, especially in the job title, be careful. Here are some examples of marketing phrases to look out for:

  • “Join an awesome team today!”
  • “No experience necessary!”
  • “Guaranteed” employment or income

2. Is the job too generic?

Look for these warning signs of generic-looking scam jobs:

  • The job seems like it could be at any company in any city.
  • There are no details included regarding the actual job duties.
  • The same job description or parts of the same job description are posted under different company names.
  • The application is hosted on a generic form website (like

3. Is the job posting full of errors?

Bad spelling and grammar are common warning signs of spam. Also look for errors or inconsistencies in the information. Does the job description contain more than one different phone number, address or email? Does the description match the job title and location?

The following is a REAL example of a job posting that is likely to be fraudulent:

Warehouse Worker – Forklift (no experience no problem)

With or with out experience, wiling to train and certify 1st, 2nd and 3rd shift available, Wemon Encouraged, felon friendly

No experience necessary, willing to train if you qualify. 

We are seeking a career-minded Forklift Operator to join our day shift and support the Operations Team in Phoenix!


SALARY $12/$17 HR D.O.E


  • Ability to operate a forklift and/or electronic pallet jack safely
  • Load pallets onto trucks to go out with delivery
  • Pull down pallets from racks as needed to replenish pick room, Organize product returns, refused cases, empty kegs, and pallets
  • Build and load return pallets and empty kegs
  • Ability to identify all shelf-life code problems and alert warehouse manager on a timely basis
  • Ensure warehouse is clean and organized before leaving, including pick area, draft room and warehouse dock areas


  • No experience needed, willing to train
  • Reliable and safety conscious
  • High energy, results driven, hands-on
  • Innovative, adaptable and detail oriented
  • Local candidates with a great work ethic


The telltale signs that this job posting is fraudulent include spelling errors, use of marketing language in the job title and a company that is impossible to find online.

The company name given in the posting is an alias of a company that falsely promises employment if you first pay them for a certification. The name is disguised to prevent you from learning about the company through an online search. This particular company goes by many other names, making it difficult for job listing companies to keep them off their sites.

Examples of Job Postings that Are Often Scams

  • Secret Shopper/Mystery Shopper jobs
  • Car Wraps
  • Package Forwarding

What can you do if you suspect a job listing is not legitimate? Report the job and back away.