Are You Searching Safely?

The internet is a primary resource for networking, job searching, and recruitment. It’s the best place to start your job or internship search but requires a certain amount of caution. While this list is not exhaustive, this guide provides some tips and tricks for finding red flags and reporting suspicious organizations.

Researching Organizations

  • Visit the organization’s website and social media pages.
  • Google the organization to find news, info, reviews, etc.
  • Search for the organization on and
  • Use to check for scam reports.
  • Search public records for the organization, such as the Secretary of State.

Warning Signs

  • The position sounds too good to be true. For instance, they reached out to you, saying they found your resume online. The pay is exceptional for the type of role.
  • The organization does not appear businesslike. The contact telephone is a residential line; people are difficult to reach or require you to talk at odd hours; written communications contain misspellings or poor grammar; websites have amateurish graphics or design.
  • Recruiters ask for personal information such as bank account numbers, social security numbers, fill out a credit report form, etc.
  • The organization asks you to purchase or provide your own equipment, such as computer, cell phone, camera, or other personal equipment OR the organization asks you to make an initial investment.
  • The organization asks you to work in a private residence.
  • The organization tries to schedule an interview in a non-professional setting such as a bar, or in a non-public place, such as a personal residence or hotel room OR the organization wants to interview you online through an instant messenger.
  • The recruiter offers to pick you up or meet you in his/her automobile.
  • The recruiter asks personal or non-businesslike questions or uses social media in an intrusive or non-businesslike way.
  • If a paid position, the organization offers to pay you in cash or “under the table” or insists that you work at less than minimum wage or without overtime pay.

Report a Suspicious Organization

If the position was posted on Handshake, contact the Career Development Center at 617-824-8586 or careers [at]