TULSA, Okla. — The pandemic disrupted a lot of people's jobs.
While many have bounced back, others are still searching and would love to find the right job to start the new year.
But that can make them targets for scammers, especially now that the pandemic has made work from home schemes more believable.
Like millions of others, Daniel Martin lost his job during the pandemic, but he caught a break with an interview with a new company.
"I was really excited, it sounded like a really good position with a lot of possibilities of growth within the company. It just seemed like something I was looking for."
They sent Daniel a contract and assigned him a project. The company was moving their offices and needed him to procure new equipment.
Since he wasn't full-time just yet, he'd have to purchase the laptops with his credit card and the company would reimburse him.
"The next 2 weeks I completed a total of 3 purchase orders and all of the payments were posting perfectly fine "
A few weeks later, the charges suddenly reversed, and Daniel's credit card balance exceeded $15,000.
After speaking with a bank representative, he learned the account owner had reported the charges as fraudulent.
"They probably in some other way scammed someone else to get their account and routing number and then they gave me that information to pay my credit card."
Daniel said he should've known better, but his excitement clouded his judgment.
And this is happening to job hunters around the country.
According to the federal trade commission, consumers reported losing more than 150 million dollars to these scams last year.
The feds are cracking down on job scams, but many still fall through the cracks. It's up to you, Daniel says, not to fall victim.
"If anything at any point during any part of the process they ask you to buy anything, just don't."
If someone contacts you about a job, call their HR department and ask if they're hiring.
Google the company address, and search the name of the company followed by the words complaint or scam.
It could keep you from getting ripped off, especially during the holidays.
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