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Career Center, Santa Clara University

Avoid Fraudulent Postings

Avoid Fraudulent Employment Activity

The Career Center offers Handshake as a resource for employers to connect with SCU students and alumni seeking internships, part-time jobs, and full-time positions. We strive to keep fraudulent postings off Handshake and Handshake has extensive security measures in place, however, we may not catch every one. Therefore, please use your own discretion when applying to a position or interacting with a potential employer, whether it be through Handshake or another platform.

Be aware the postings may appear legitimate with unauthorized use of company trademarks and copyright material. Some common signs that a job posting is a scam include:

  • Request to cash fraudulent checks and monetary transfers
  • Correspondence from email accounts such as Google, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail
  • Misspellings & grammatical errors
  • Failure to list a specific location for the job
  • Get rich quick language
  • Request for Social Security Number or any financial information

If you ever notice or are concerned about a suspicious job or internship posting, please contact the Career Center at

Core essentials to avoiding fraudulent employment activity:

  • Do not trust any interview process that is conducted exclusively through text or messaging apps, including the app Wire.  If you are uncertain, contact the Career Center before proceeding.
  • Do not give your personal bank account, PayPal account, credit card numbers, or  Social Security number during the interview process.
  • Do not agree to have funds or paychecks direct deposited into any of your accounts by an employer – you should know them first. (Most employers give the option of direct deposit or a paycheck, and make these arrangements during your first day or week of actual employment, on-site – not before).
  • Do not forward, transfer, send by courier (i.e., FedEx, UPS) or "wire" any money to any employer, or for any employer, using your personal accounts(s).
  • Do not transfer money and retain a portion for payment in any way, including through Zelle, Venmo, or other app services.
  • Do not respond to suspicious and/or “too good to be true” unsolicited job emails.
  • In general, applicants do not pay a fee to obtain a job (but there are some rare exceptions – so be careful, and consult with a professional at the Career Center first).
  • Keep an eye on your Notifications in Handshake. Handshake will notify students through the Notifications module if they have applied to a position or employer that has been identified as fraudulent.  

Resources to verify organizations

What if you are already involved in a scam?

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has given the following instructions to students or individuals who have responded to fraudulent postings:

  • Immediately contact the local police.  The police are responsible for conducting an investigation (regardless of whether the scam artist is local or in another state).
  • If it is a situation where money has been sent to a fraudulent employer: contact your bank or credit card company immediately to close the account and dispute the charges.  You may also contact the Career Center to explore support from the University.
  • If the transaction occurred completely over the internet, file an incident report with the Department of Justice division of Computer Crime and Intellectual Property, or by calling the FTC at 1-877-FTC-HELP (1-877-832-4357).

LinkedIn has an internal process for responding to fraud:

  • Refer to this help article for help recognizing and reporting scams on LinkedIn.