Scammers have been trying to con people out of their hard-earned cash since money was invented. The advent of technology has simply made the scams harder to spot, easier to pull off, and more ubiquitous. People trying to steal our personal information or requesting money under false pretenses seem to reach into every area of our lives—even in our search for a new job.

Fake recruiters posting fake jobs are, at best, wasting everyone’s time and effort; at worst, they are actually stealing money, labor, personal information, and more. We are all affected to some degree, job seekers and employers alike. Unfortunately, I know this firsthand because ATR International’s name and image were recently used in an attempt to trick job seekers.

If you have been affected by a job scam using any of our information, I am very sorry this has happened to you. I also encourage you to report the incident appropriately. Even if you ignored the overture and were largely unaffected, please consider sharing your experience with us so that we can add it to the information we’ve gathered.

These are terrible crimes precisely because they steal our trust in each other. They play on our hopes and dreams; using the promise of a job seems extra cruel. We have reported the incidents that we are aware of and are following the recommendations provided to us, but unfortunately, it is difficult to catch and prosecute the perpetrators of these phishing schemes. 

These bad actors are sophisticated scammers using major platforms and apps. Job boards like Indeed struggle to combat fake listings, and many other companies have been spoofed like ATR. As convincing as they can be, there are clear warning signs, including online interviews that are conducted only through chat applications or requests to send money or purchase equipment like a phone or laptop.

Here are a few tips to help you determine if a communication is actually coming from ATR:

  • We will never ask you for sensitive personal banking or other financial information before you’re hired. No reputable agency, recruiter, or HR department will ever ask you to send that as part of the interview process.
  • We do not charge our candidates any fees for our services.
  • We will never ask you to send us money or purchase a device of any kind. Period.
  • You will always speak to a real person if you’re working with us. We use technology for efficiency, not to replace people.
  • Beware of job offers that claim “you’re hired” without an interview or even submitting a resume. We would never do that.
  • We don’t use WhatsApp, Telegram, or similar apps to contact candidates. We contact people using our verified LinkedIn profiles or through phone calls and email.
  • You can find our team members on our website and confirm that a recruiter really works for us. Or give us a call. Trust your instincts and double check!

How to Prevent Job Scams

The only benefit of job scams being so widespread is that there is a lot of great advice for protection and prevention. Here are some recommendations and resources:

  • Report job scams to the Internet Crime Complaint Center or file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).
  • Do not communicate with scammers. Report the number or email as spam and block it.
  • Find information about reporting identity theft and how to recover from it at
  • Check out the recommended computer security practices and other resources at the FTC’s consumer information site.
  • Read Indeed’s comprehensive advice that covers many common job scams, warning signs, and essential steps protect yourself.
  • Report any fake job listings to the site it’s posted on. Let companies know if their company is being used as part of a scam.

This problem is not one-sided, only affecting job seekers. More and more companies are finding themselves on the receiving end of fake applications. Whether it is to release malware or steal information or trade secrets, hackers are posing as applicants to try and gain “entry.” This fakery is bad for all of us, personally and businesswise.

We understand the frustration and worry that these incidents can cause and are committed to addressing them urgently. On both sides of the hiring partnership, we must be vigilant. If it’s difficult to find and prosecute these individuals, then prevention is the cure. Education and awareness are our best defenses. We need to be open and share information so that we can stop, or at least lessen, the occurrence of these scams. It’s going to take us all working together.

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