CAPE TOWN - More than half of South Africans show vulnerability indicators to being susceptible to trafficking, according to the Global Slave Index.
With at least 2,2 million jobs having been lost this year, more people are finding themselves in a vulnerable position economically, traffickers are using this to their advantage, luring potential victims into a life of trafficking by offering them job opportunities.
The method used by human traffickers is similar in most countries, where victims are offered great job opportunities, says the Hawks,
“People are desperate for jobs, so if there are signs that the job you applied for is a scam. We advise that you let other people know of this because if you keep it a secret, you are actually putting other people’s life in danger,” said Hawks spokesperson Col Katlego Mogale.
Mogale also says that the scams that are prevalent are those that are asking people to apply for jobs and mostly it's online and they are made to be such lucrative jobs.
“The payment is high and they promise an air ticket to and from where your job is. Once you get an advert that is promising you more than you would ever fathom that is when you need to do due diligence,” he said.
According to A21, a non-profit organisation fighting the injustice of human trafficking, if you are going to consider a job outside of South Africa, you will need to do some online research on the company offering the position.
Here are ways to tell if a job is a scam:
– Visit the company's website and if they don't have one or it doesn't fit with how they describe the company, consider that a red flag.
– Check with organisations like Prevention vs Cure, who conducts the vetting of opportunities, to see if the company has been reported as a scammer.
– Do not pay money - for anything. Legitimate employers don't charge to hire you.
If you are invited for an interview, here are some tips to ensure your safety:
– Make sure that your interview is in a public space or at an address verified by the company itself.
– Know the route to the interview and ensure you have organised your own transport to and from the location.
– Tell someone where you will be, and how long you will be there for.
– Phone the company to verify that the person who contacted you does work for the company or agency.