December 22, 2006

Just desserts or just desert?

They say that a fool and his money are soon parted. But there sure do seem to be a heck of a lot of people who seem to be interested in expediting the process :p I’ve written before about literary scams and financial scams but the latest one I’ve come across is a recruitment scam :)

I’ve been looking into jobs in Dubai because we would possibly like to move there – my sister lives there, the place seems to have the latest techno-gadgets, better access to books and movies, so what’s not to like, eh? :) Anyway, in the process of looking at recruitment agencies and possible places to submit my resume, I ran across JobsInDubai.com. I came across the site via web search (or because some other site listed them) and at first glance, it looked legit enough. So I used their online form to apply.

The next day I get an e-mail from them – my CV was a perfect match for a job they had listed! All I had to do was fork out $74 (it’s *only* $34 if you are in the US or Canada and free if you are in the Gulf BTW) as a refundable deposit and I would be on my way to my dream job. Now when somebody starts asking me for money (especially for something for which they should be getting payment already), alarms go off all over the place. You should be in my head – it’s kind of like a scene from "Mission Impossible" :p

So I did some digging and guess what? JobsInDubai.com are famous – and not in a good way. There are many posts about them online – like this one, or this one. Neither of those articles come out and say that JobsInDubai.com are scammers – they hint that perhaps they might have reformed. However, my experience plus what these articles say (and what I found online) leads me to believe that they have not reformed and are in fact, actively working on scamming people.

For one thing, there is an interesting tactic they employ at any blog or site which comments about JobsInDubai.com – you soon get somebody named Beanster (or some such name) and Nofel Izz (the owner/founder whatever of JobsInDubai) turning up to defend the company. Beans says he’s just a bystander – but seems to know a lot about JobsInDubai and their current location etc. Nofel will respond to the accusations but will never address any of the central issues such as why they charge money and how come they claim to operate in the UAE and Canada (and as far as I know, it’s against the law in both places for a recruitment agency to charge a prospective employee money) but are not abiding by the laws of the country.

Both these individuals claim that the negative comments about JobsInDubai.com are made by employees of other (non-fee charging) recruitment agencies in the Gulf. That this is just plain underhanded business tactics. Now I’m not affiliated with any of these other employment agencies. Heck, if I was affiliated with them, I wouldn’t have found out about JobsInDubai.com because I wouldn’t have been searching for Gulf jobs :p

The other thing I find interesting is that Nofel in his interview with "Windows" magazine states that under their new mode of operations, they don’t actively submit resumes to prospective employers. Instead, they simply enter your information into their database and prospective employers can pay them Canadain $195 for 500 resume views. But in their e-mail to me, they claim that my resume is a perfect match for a job they have available – implying (though not actually stating) that my resume would be submitted to this prospective employer. Smells a bit like the fish market? Yeah, I got that pong too :p

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Tags: Interesting, Internet
Posted by Fahim at 6:53 am   Comments (1)