With 143,000 barrels of oil collected per day, the EIA reports that employment in the oil industry is on the rise. In fact, an estimated 178,000 Americans were employed in the oil and gas industry in 2017, according to the Bureau of Labour Statistics. However, most employees are not aware of what’s going on behind the scenes. While a typical business loses 5% of its revenues to fraud each year, field operations are more likely to become vulnerable to fraud than any other section of business in the shale oil and gas industry.
As more fraudulent job offers in the oil industry begin to appear, now is the time to learn how to recognize and protect yourself from becoming the next victim. Since most offers are made through emails, there are common factors to look out for. Here are some of the most common signs of fraud in the oil industry.
Receiving an unexpected job offer via email
The most common tactic used by cyber criminals involves the name of the sender. Scammers usually include the names of high-end companies and recognizable brands that will attract attention, especially for those seeking employment. The initial rule is never to trust the display name, even if it appears familiar. Instead, check the email address of the sender. If the email looks suspicious – don’t open the mail.
Another detail is to consider are links that will be embedded in the body. To test the link, type the website address in a Google search query to prevent any redirect codes or hidden tracking.
Asking for confidential information
While most cyber fraud often portrays as local banks, credit card companies, and other related institutions – the shale oil and gas industry is also at high risk of potential fraud. If you receive an email that asks for confidential information such as credit card info, social security, or even a home address – refrain from submitting any information by all means.
Any legitimate company will never use an email to ask for personal credentials. Instead, they will go over the process with you in person while you sign the employment contract. For example, no employer would ask a potential candidate to provide financial statements before the interview.
State of address
A common sign of email fraud is the missing name to follow with the email. Make sure to pay extra attention to any email that includes an open-ended greeting or a generic message, particularly if you don’t recognize the sender. A legitimate employer will always use personal greetings and salutations, along with including their names and contact number. If the email does not provide any contact details of the sender/company, this is easily a red flag to potential employment fraud.
Remember, there are good employment opportunities, but you don’t have to wire money to land a job. So, if you’re in the process of seeking employment or not sure how to establish which company is legit, keep these warning signs in mind and stay safe throughout the job searching process.