Safety Tips for Your Online Job Search

The influence of the internet and media on the pace of globalization in the last two decades cannot be overemphasized. This has brought about the common saying today, that the world has become a global village in which there are no boundaries to trade and communication between countries or people in different countries. The impact of globalization is shaping virtually all aspects of human lives and the way things are done.

Via the use of the internet and media tools, globalization has led to the exchange of culture among various descents, it has shaped the financial reporting requirements of businesses and organizations, and has laid down some sort of norms for the modern job application process, amongst others. Adieu to the days when prospective job applicants had to queue at the newspaper vendor stand by the roadside to pay to write out available job vacancies advertised in the newspapers. It is rare nowadays for job application letters and resumes to be sent by post.

With online access, jobseekers can reach out to thousands of prospective employers within a very short period of time, at a minimal cost, and in the convenience of their homes. Though the benefits of online job hunting are enormous, it however has its drawbacks. These drawbacks are mostly associated with the activities of scammers, spammers, and dubious people who want to take advantage of the situation of anxious jobseekers by creating fraudulent job positions and adverts.

While we try to screen employers and the positions they post on Vi-M Talent Assist, it is also very important for jobseekers to exercise caution and common sense in their online job search. You need to read position descriptions carefully!

Here are some red flags you should watch out for in online job adverts:

  1. You are asked to give credit card or bank account details.
  2. You are asked to send a payment by wire service or courier, or are asked to transfer money, including via PayPal or Western Union money orders.
  3. You are asked for too much personal information such as your ID Number, BVN, or to send a photocopy of your ID to verify your identity.
  4. You are asked to complete a background check before you can be considered for a position.
  5. The posting appears to come from a legitimate company or organization, but the contact’s email address does not match the company’s website domain (i.e., rather than
  6. The job posting does not mention the responsibilities of the job; rather it focuses on the amount of money you will make.
  7. A Google search of the employer name (or name plus the word “scam”) returns several scam reports.
  8. In response to your application to a legitimate-appearing job description, you receive a marketing email, or an interview invite not structured professionally.
  9. If you are an entry-level candidate with little experience, be wary of an offer with a salary that is above the normal range expected for your experience.
  10. Multiple misspellings or grammatical errors in the job notice or e-mail communications from the employer may indicate that the job position is ingenuine.

Where a jobseeker has reasons to be suspicious of a job ad or feels uncomfortable with some of the information requested, he/ she should either back off or proceed with extreme caution. With the rate of identity thefts, kidnapping, human trafficking, and other insecurity issues on the rise in Nigeria, and the number of new job boards and ads that seem to be popping up of late on various social media platform, promising to put jobseekers’ credentials in front of thousands of employers, it has never been more important than before to “look before you leap” regarding exposing your personal and professional information to untrusted online sources.

Remember, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.





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