You're scanning Craigslist for a job, and you happen to come across an ad with an attractive job description and pay rate. Before you cancel the unemployment checks, consider how a background check could save you from making a huge mistake in your employment future and how a background check could prevent you from making a mistake when you respond to other Craigslist ads as well.
1. Job Ads
Genuine job offers do exist on Craigslist, but you'll wade through tons of fake ads first. The most popular scam asks you to sign up for trial offers from different companies. You use your personal information to follow through with the offer and end up with an inbox full of spam and no paycheck. Plus, dozens of websites now have access to your name, address, phone number, credit card number and identity.
Avoid this scam by performing a background check on all companies before you apply. Then, check out their online reviews and Better Business Bureau rating.
2. Lost Pet Ads
Losing a pet is heart wrenching, so you place an ad on Craigslist. Soon, con artists email or call to say they found your pet. From the picture you posted in the ad, they have an accurate description of Fido, and they want a reward, which includes your name and as much personal information as possible, before they'll bring your pet home.
Protect yourself by posting a notice in the free lost and found section of your newspaper. Use a generic or work email address to receive pet sighting reports. If possible, run a background check on the person who claims to have found your pet and make sure they are legitimate.
3. Dating Ads
When your love life is in the dumps, you may turn to Craigslist to find a date. What you'll find, however, could be online porn distributers. They write heartfelt ads, and after you respond, they ask you to join a website that automatically sends daily porn emails and other solicitations.
Resist the urge to connect romantically via Craigslist. With the variety of online dating sites and face-to-face meeting sites available, go a safer route. When you do find someone you like, run a simple background check to ensure he or she isn't a sexual predator or a porn company.
Don't be taken in by these three Craigslist ads. Play it safe and be wise as you get background checks and protect yourself.