How To Spot Fake Job Adverts Online

Spoilers: sperlling misteaks is a read flag!!!

Employment scams can hit us right where it hurts. Job hunting is difficult and time-consuming enough without fake adverts derailing you.

Imagine how much faster you might find employment if you didn’t have to trawl through pages of false listings and hyped-up adverts for non-existent vacancies, posted solely with the intention of stealing your personal information. Then there is the added stress of recovering and changing stolen details.

Fortunately there are ways to spot these adverts so you can make the most of your job searches.


Occasionally a job vacancy will not require applicants to have experience in a given area. The vast majority of the time, however, a vacancy will outline even basic experiences that an applicant should meet in order to be suitable for the role.

See our thoughts on the importance of gaining experience here.

A complete lack of expected experience does not guarantee that a job is fake but it should inspire caution. If you decide to proceed, do so carefully, and maintain the alarm bells in the back of your mind.


Most modern business correspondence is carried out via email. A professional business will have an established business account with its email provider, to ensure that the email services and add-ons reflect the nature of the business purpose for which the account is being used.

Emails from unfamiliar or strange addresses should be received with caution. Consider whether you want to open such an email, and why the company has not set itself up with a business account. It is possible they simply haven’t bothered. It is also possible the job you are applying for is a scam.

Neither option reflects well on the company or your future prospects with them.


Suppose that you have made contact with the hirer and are currently engaged in correspondence with them.

  • How good is their communication?
  • Does it feel like English is their first language?
  • How is their spelling and grammar?

Poorly written emails are one of the biggest indicators that a job is not legitimate.

We all make spelling mistakes and typos from time to time, but emails riddled with mistakes convey a lack of professionalism and is good indicator of either a fake advert or a poor employer. Neither of which is the outcome you want.


Most of us know by now not to give away personal information freely, whether we are talking on the phone or inputting our PIN number when paying on card. A clever con artist can confuse you, however. They might dress up the request or make it seem innocuous enough that you don’t think twice about popping your details in. Phishing is the name of this game.

The vast proportion of fake online jobs are written and promoted with the express intent of stealing your personal information. Con artists will use this information for their financial gain, either by transferring money directly from your bank, or by selling your private information on to third parties. If a hirer expects you to make payments upfront, stop and back away.

You can read about specific types of online scams here.


WorkGaps is a recruitment revolution about to sweep the part-time, temporary and zero-contract sectors in the UK. By automatically matching workers with job listings posted by hirers, it represents the first recruitment platform of its kind specifically designed for part-time, temporary and zero-contract work. It is free to job-seekers, it’s easy to use but most of all it is safe. You can safely manage your profile, your CV and references, job applications and even your calendar.

Secure platforms like WorkGaps show the Internet at its best, when human innovation and digital technology combine to improve interaction and communication between hirers and workers. WorkGaps’ primary focus is to help you find work as safely and quickly as possible. And because hirers can also manage their workforces through WorkGaps, the process is completely transparent. You know just what and when is expected of you, and you can have all the details in your pocket. You don’t even need to be looking for work to start WorkGaps working for you.

The Internet is populated with false advertisements, fake job postings and con artists out to steal your personal details, but it is also a gold mine of potential job listings, if you know where to look. So do yourself a favour and avoid the sharks. Hop on-board with WorkGaps and see just how fast we can match you safely to a trusted hirer.

To register your interest in this safe, secure recruitment platform, join here.

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