Finding a job is tough, and it’s hard work. You’re looking for a way to earn money – not give it away. But it can be awfully tempting to pay someone who promises you a job. I was desperate, and the ad said cleaning jobs were available… I called the number in the ad, and they said I could start working as soon as I paid $100 for certification… I’d been looking for a job for months, and needed help. For $4,000, they guaranteed me interviews with their clients and said they’d refund my money if I wasn’t satisfied… Scammers advertise jobs exactly where legitimate employers do – on popular websites, in the classifieds, and even on TV. The ads sound so promising, whether it’s for hourly work or an executive-level job. Every ad raises your hopes. But ads placed by scammers come with a twist: you have to pay – and then, there’s no job. It turns out there was no job, no certification, and no chance I was going to get my money back. There was no access, there were no clients. Not only didn’t I get any interviews, but they kept every dime I paid. What a waste. The study materials that were supposed to help me get a postal job, were useless, and the company I paid has nothing to do with the Postal Service. Let’s face it, many con artists are good at what they do. They can sound very convincing, especially when your defenses are down. They may say they’ve got a job waiting for youů or they might guarantee to place you in a job. But you can’t believe the promises – even when you want to. Legitimate companies don’t make promises or guarantees about jobs. If an employer or employment-service firm wants you to pay – even if they say it’s for certification, training materials or for their expenses placing you with a company – don’t do business with them. Legitimate employers and firms don’t ask you to pay for the promise of a job. Some listing services and consultants write their ads or phone scripts to sound like they have jobs waiting for you. The truth is, they’re only selling information about looking for a job – information that’s generally available for free. Remember, you shouldn’t have to pay to get paid. Don’t pin your hopes – or your money – on a promise. If you’ve been the victim of a job scam and paid someone for a job that didn’t exist, we want to hear about it. Complain to the Federal Trade Commission at ftc.gov/complaint or 1-877-FTC-HELP. Letting the Federal Trade Commission know about your experience can help put an employment scam out of business. For more information, visit ftc.gov/jobscams.