COVID-19 has fundamentally impacted how we live our lives; changing how we shop, how we entertain ourselves, how we stay connected, and even how we work. What hasn’t changed is how scammers are constantly looking to take advantage of these situations. Case in point: the rise in work-from-home scams.
Work-from-home jobs have always been a target for scammers, but with COVID-19 resulting in more people looking for employment from the safety and comfort of their own homes, these scams have proliferated.
In a recently released survey from Flexjobs, 20% of job seekers reported having been a victim of a work-from-home job scam. While this news is concerning to job seekers, it should also be equally concerning to brands as many of these scammers are using trusted names and logos to lure in their potential victims. In a report released by The Harris Poll, 56% of respondents stated it was difficult for them to determine if the information they see online is from a credible source or not.
In another article posted by Flexjobs, they warn of websites built by scammers to look exactly like the websites of legitimate companies. These spoof websites are used to lure in potential victims with promises of lucrative work-from-home positions and are often linked to domains that are slightly altered from the real company’s domain.
Scammers are also using phishing techniques to draw in potential victims, sending out legitimate-looking job offers from well-known companies, inviting applicants to click on links that can be used for anything from asking for sensitive personal information to loading harmful malware onto a victim’s device.
Because it is so easy for criminals to register websites and email addresses specifically designed to spoof legitimate businesses and employees, it’s more important than ever for brands to be vigilant when it comes to monitoring for the unauthorized use of their intellectual property.
Just one bad actor perpetuating a scam while hiding behind a trusted brand can undo years of reputation and consumer confidence. When an infringing domain is discovered, swift and decisive action is necessary. To help combat abuses and make digital channels safer for everyone, we’ve created a guide to domain name enforcement, including sample templates for reporting infringement, for brand holders and their legal teams to use.