Job Scams Surged By 118% In 2023 With The Help Of Artificial Intelligence

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The number of job scams jumped by 118% in 2023, according to a report from the Identity Theft Resource Center. Artificial intelligence played a role in the increase, as scammers used it to create realistic-looking job postings online.

"In 2023 and continuing into early 2024, we saw an increase in identity thieves creating phony job postings on legitimate networking and job search sites, enticing victims to apply for jobs. The bad actors created professional-looking LinkedIn profiles, or profiles on job sites, with live websites for phony businesses, or impersonated legitimate companies and used a fake name or a former employee's name to set up interviews," the ITRC wrote.

Once a victim applied for the job, the scammers moved the rest of the process off the original platform, contacting them via email, text message, or a third-party messaging app. Then, they would ask the applicant to fill out additional paperwork, requesting personal information and proof of identity.

With that information in hand, the scammers have everything they need to steal the applicant's identity.

According to the Federal Trade Commission, consumers lost an average of $2,000 to job scams in 2022. The agency said that consumers reported losing $367 million to job scams, a 76% increase from 2021.

The FTC said one of the best ways to avoid being scammed is to do your own research about a job posting before sending them your personal information.

"Don't accept any job offer until you've checked it out. Scammers pretend to be both well-known and smaller companies, posting jobs on employment websites. So, reach out to the company directly using contact information you know is legit," the FTC said.

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