Do you ever fall for something ridiculously stupid and then in hindsight ask yourself how on earth you managed to let yourself be that gullible in the first place?
I fell hard for an online fake job scam… something I’ve done more than once over the last few months! It was perfectly timed and I couldn’t help myself because it was a brand that I trusted and a company that I had represented. So when they advertised a position to apply for online I didn’t think twice.
They wanted 15-20 mothers who enjoyed writing to do so for their website. The position sounded fabulous – I mean as a mother all you had to do was write about your day… anyone could do it, maybe even me!
It was a long shot – the position had been advertised in their Facebook group of OVER TWO-HUNDRED-THOUSAND members. That sounds like an overwhelming number of applications, if even half the number of group members applied… but without letting the scale of things get the better of me, I filled out the application.
Looking back on it I can see how unrealistic the application process sounded. The company was hyping up the position via posts on social media, making it seem like anyone’s dream job opportunity, especially mothers and heavily promoting the link that you needed to click on to apply.
It all seemed so exciting that I jumped into it without a second thought! The application process was really easy, it was all of about 8-10 questions. But one thing I felt I did wrong was use an email address that I hadn’t used with the company before.
At first, I really regretted it because I believed that had I used the email address they already had, one which was my company address with them, then maybe I might have stood a better chance at being selected. I thought that somehow perhaps they had some sort of priority system in place whereby company domain email addresses were flagged in some way… wishful thinking at its finest, I know.
This was until I received the first email from them letting me know that the application process would take two weeks… half the email was actually advertising and at the bottom of the email was a link to their weight loss products and services with discount codes and other enticing retail gimmicks. It was grossly unprofessional.
I had been had! But it wasn’t until almost two months later that it registered in my mind that I had fallen for a sales incentive trap!
Big Fat Scam!
The company wasn’t really looking for writers. They didn’t want anyone to ‘blog’ for their website- what they actually wanted was personal details! They wanted to be able to send their advertising to as many people as possible- and potential customers were no longer simply just handing over their email address and contact information for no reason… so they concocted a new approach to trap as many people as possible… and it worked!
In fact, the position is still being advertised on their website. Anyone can click on the link, fill out the questionnaire and apply for a job which does not exist- and instead receive copious amounts of marketing material from them EVERY SINGLE DAY!
On one hand, I supposed whoever came up with that idea is a genius! But on the other, it just seems like such a deceitful way of obtaining people’s personal information.
What Did I Learn
The lesson I learned from this is to have a designated email address for events such as this. For things that seem too good to be true.
All these mothers just trying to take up an opportunity which sounded like it would work perfectly around their family obligations, now being bombarded with emails of weight loss products from the company instead of ever hearing what the outcome is of the 15-20 ‘Mummy Blogger’ positions.
In a social media group of over two-hundred-thousand mothers, I can’t be the only foolish person to have applied, and if you happen to be another one of the Mums who fell for it, well then a big CONGRATULATIONS to you!
Yeah sure, we’ve just been fooled, but you know what? At least we tried! At least we applied ourselves and we’ve got the rest of our lives to enjoy moments like these, experiences which force us to grow, learn, weed out the fake from what’s real and eventually see the magic that we are so blessed to already be surrounded by!
Have you ever been scammed by a fake job? Tell us in the comments below.