Don’t Lose Your Holiday Money to a Seasonal Job Scam

As local and national companies continue to announce major holiday hiring campaigns, experts predict retailers could add as many as 650,000 seasonal workers through the holiday season. This is an increase of more than 10 percent from last year. With the recent spike in employment scams, BBB is warning job seekers to watch out for hiring scams, especially during the holidays.

BBB has seen a 26 percent increase in the monetary loss to employment scams in the past year. Since January, consumers have reported losses totaling over $3 million, compared to the $800,000 in total losses reported between January and October 2017. With holiday hiring still underway, BBB predicts reports to continue to increase through the remainder of the year.

BBB Holiday Hiring Red Flags: 

  • Vague company descriptions.If you can’t identify the company’s contact information, owner, headquarters or even product from its online ad, it could be an indication that this is not a legitimate job offer. Always check out companies first online at org.
  • No interview.Be wary of jobs that hire on the spot or conduct interviews via online chat or instant messaging services.
  • Overpayment.If you do take a work-from-home job, be careful if your new boss sends you a check for more than you need and requests you to send some back, or to use part of it to pay someone else, or purchase gift cards. That’s a classic overpayment scam or gift card scam. The check will most likely bounce, and the funds from the gift card will be gone once provided to scammers, and you will be stuck eating the cost.

Be sure to ask a multitude of questions when speaking with someone that is interested in hiring. This will allow you to know the expectations they will have of you as an employee if you agree to sign on with the company for the holiday season.


If you would like to report a scam, call your BBB at 256-533-1640 or go to the BBB Scam Tracker. To find trustworthy businesses, visit

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