Public Safety

Don't become the victim of an online scam

Published: Thursday, April 13, 2017

Online scams are prevalent, and many target students looking for work.

For the past couple of years, Investigator Monica Jagoditz has seen many similar job scams students fall victim to.

The scam begins with an email telling the recipient the employer is looking to hire someone. When the recipient replies expressing their interest, the scammer asks for their name, address and phone number.

The scammer then sends the recipient a check, and asks them to deposit it and send the scammer the deposit receipt. The check rarely has the same company name as the company name in the email.

Once the check is deposited, the scammer tells the recipient to get out the maximum money they can withdraw from their account and send it to someone through Western Union or MoneyGram. The scammer than takes the money and cannot be reached again.

"No reputable employer is going to ask you to send them money,"€ Jagoditz said.

Students can easily tell the scams apart from real employers by using some tips, according to Jagoditz.

The first warning sign to pick up on is if an employer contacts a student without the student first reaching out or submitting an application.

"Rarely will you be contacted by an employer for a job,"€ Jagoditz said.

She recommends students research the company, call to confirm the job opening and ask for an interview. Students should even consider driving past the company's physical location.

"If they want to do everything by email and text that's a big red flag,"€ Jagoditz said.

If you believe you are being contacted by a scammer, send the information to

Written by Kelly Cantwell - Assistant Public Information Officer