Your CV is meant to be the way you sell yourself to an employer, but it can be targeted by criminals.

Too much personal information could lead to identity theft, where fraudsters can obtain your details, steal your identity and spend your money, take out loans or buy goods in your name.

Remember, your CV should be a summary of why you’re the best candidate for that job. In most cases, you should not be asked to include:  

  • your date of birth
  • your full address
  • passport number
  • driving licence number
  • National Insurance number
  • Marital status and number of children
  • Credit card or bank account numbers
  • Weight and height
  • Hair and eye colour
  • Headshot

Who’s targeted by job scams?

Alarmingly, almost three-quarters of job hunters admit they wouldn’t recognise the signs of a job scam.

According to Action Fraud, job seekers aged between 18 and 24 are the most likely to be targeted by job scams, losing around £4,000 on average.

What to do if you fall foul of a job scam

If you think you’ve been scammed, you must stop all communication with the scammers immediately. 

If you can, take a note of their details and report them to the USA Government here or Action Fraud in the UK.

If you’ve given them any money or shared your bank account details with them, contact your bank immediately.

You should also report the attempted scam to any website where you’ve listed your CV.

Follow our five steps to protect yourself from employment fraud:

  1. Be suspicious if the employer or agent provides a webmail address such as @yahoo or @hotmail as a contact point.
  2. Check any documents for poor spelling and grammar – this is often a sign that fraudsters are at work.
  3. Check official records on websites such as companies house or overseas registries to confirm that the organisation offering you the job actually exists. If it does, contact the organisation directly through officially listed contact details to confirm the job offer is genuine.
  4. If you’re in discussion about a job abroad, ask the embassy to represent the country where you believe you will be working on obtaining a visa and how much it costs. Check that the answers the potential employer gives you are the same – if they’re not, it’s a strong indication of fraud.
  5. Tell the employer that you will make your own travel and accommodation arrangements. Beware if they try hard to dissuade you or tell you that you have to use the agency they refer you to.

For further help, go to Safer Jobs, which provides specific advice for candidates and recruitment professionals.

Sources: Which?