I fell for a job scam and need help

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Visit identity theft.gov, where you can get a plan of action.


Since you’ve already been given the best technical advice I could have offered (freezing your credit, etc.), I wanted to hop into the comments and tell you not to be ashamed about this. Being desperate for work is a horrible feeling. It’s absolutely draining, out there, in the job search world. You aren’t alone and you aren’t the only person who’s fallen for this crap. I had a good friend (single mom, new mom, unemployed) fall for something similar recently. They tried to tell her they’d send her a personal check to purchase her office equipment with, and wanted her to send back the “extra.” She also did a week of “work” for them before telling me what was going on, and it was a total scam. Indeed, Craigslist and LinkedIn have all been infiltrated by scammers, and you shouldn’t feel too bad for making this mistake. Learn from it! Never give out your social or upload identifying documents unless you are filling out tax forms or a legitimate background check via secured browser.


As suggested below lock up your credit today and forget about using your drivers license for any number sequence pin code like an ATM card. I’ve seen this scam before. A “Recruiter” asked me for my DL, SSN and Birthdate. I told him that is an inappropriate request as this type information is provided after a job offer letter is received. Asking for a Birthdate is a huge No No as that can be interpreted as age discrimination if you are not hired. Your Birthdate is on your DL so technically they are in violation Federal EEO regulations. 99% of the time this info will be gathered by an HR representative after a job offer is made and accepted. A job offer should spell out all the specifics for salary, sick leave, vacation time, holidays, etc etc and will be on a company letter headed to be signed via a digital signature app like DocuSign or something similar. Last job offer I had I was flown to Corporate on their dime for a week. I was required to go through several trainings and completed all my paper work with an HR representative.


PSA: **NEVER** send sensitive information via email, it is **not** a secure form of communication. With few exceptions (that require lengthy, complicated setups), emails are sent in plaintext, meaning that anyone listening to the network anywhere between you and recipient can easily read anything you send. And it’s not just scammers that’ll do this. I’ve had landlords, realtors, and even mortgage officers (bank employees!) ask me to send information like this via email. If there is no other way you can send the info, you can put the information in a text file or files, then zip up the file(s) and encrypt, requiring a password to decrypt and unzip. It’s not too difficult to do this, a quick search will net you the instructions.


There’s identity theft resources in the sidebar. Lock your identity down. Credit is the big one but there’s also a few others for bank accounts and like another poster mentioned setting an IRS pin.