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Health Department warns of job scam

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The New Mexico Department of Health issued an announcement Wednesday warning residents of a scam targeting job seekers.

According to the Health Department, the scam leads people to believe they are being interviewed for a Department of Health job when the real purpose is to try to gain access to their personal identification and financial information.

The Department of Health was made aware of the scam after multiple people contacted the department to report their experiences and share their suspicions.

In this case, a fake job posting claiming to be from New Mexico Department of Health has appeared on LinkedIn. Applicants promptly received an email congratulating them on being selected for a job interview and were sent federal I-9 and W-4 forms.

The applicants were then instructed to download and install a chat application on their phones for a job interview. In those text message interviews, people would be asked to send the completed forms along with photocopies of their driver’s licenses and Social Security numbers. The job seekers would also be provided with additional instructions that would allow the scammers to gain access to the applicants’ credit card information.

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The Department of Health is working with the New Mexico Office of the Attorney General regarding prosecution of the scammers.

The Department of Health wants residents to be aware that all jobs with the department and state government are posted on the New Mexico State Personnel Office website. Applicants are not asked to fill out I-9, W-4 or other employment forms until an applicant has accepted a job and reports for their first day of work.

In addition, job seekers should be aware the state of New Mexico will never ask potential employees to send money or purchase a computer or office equipment as a condition for employment.

Anyone in New Mexico wishing to learn more about common scams, or to report scam or fraud, can do so online by visiting the New Mexico Attorney General’s website at https://www.nmag.gov/.