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By Audrey Korir

You are unemployed, the landlord has served you with a one week notice threatening to kick you out if you don’t pay the rent, your water and electricity has been cut off, it’s a tough time!

Suddenly after hours and hours of going through various job boards an exciting job opening catches your eye, but as you read through the job description a lot of things do not add up – making you question its legitimacy.

If you have experienced this before, then it’s time to trust your instincts and be wary of looming job scams.

Before you apply for a job, review these 6 red flags to help you determine whether the job is a scam;

1. The “employer” requests for money

This should be an obvious red flag.

Do not pay money for anything. Legitimate employers don’t charge to hire you.  Remember that these scammers are in business, the only way they make money is by taking advantage of your unemployment and duping you into believing that it is a real job offer.

A common one here in Kenya is when the scammers ask you to send money to a certain number under the pretext that it is meant to cover certain requirements like Medical Covers.

2. No Interview process

Job scammers are only interested in obtaining your personal information or money and not concerned with getting to know you and assessing your skills. They’ll typically skip the interview process and even omit the usual steps a corporate recruiter or HR Manager would follow.

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3. Unprofessional email address

If the email indicated in the job description is a Gmail, Yahoo, or Hotmail email address, it could be a red flag that the job is a scam. A reputable company/organization will have an email address that matches their domain. Look for addresses like or a non-personal email address.

4. The offer sounds too good to be true

Scammers like to outline rewards such as an extremely high starting salary and the best health benefits imaginableThink twice before applying. Their aim is to draw in victims with attractive compensation benefits.  A legitimate job description will tend to focus more on the skills required and clearly outline what the roles/responsibilities of the job are.

5. Spelling/Grammar Errors

Most legitimate HR Managers or recruiters will take the time to ensure communication with candidates is professional, free from typos, and easy to understand.

6. The company has little or no online presence

If you’re feeling wary about the job posting or offer, a quick Google search should help you decide if it’s a scam or not. A company with very little or no presence could indicate that it’s not a real company at all. Look for a company website or social media account.

Finally, exercise caution when applying for any job. Take time to read through the job description and research the company as well. If it sounds too good to be true, then you can be sure it is.

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