Another day, another 2-3 LinkedIn connection requests from fake profiles. Every day they’re received and every day they’re reported to LinkedIn.
Yet more continue to find their merry way into my Inbox. Like this one today from James Owens who’s in the “Millitray”:
So I sent an InMail (LinkedIn, you now owe me one InMail):
Dearest One, How are you doing ,My name is Captain James Owen an
American soldier based in Afghanistan on peace keeping ,Being so
ignorant of the internet since but a friend has opened my eyes about the
internet and that is why i am writing you as i have already gone
through your profile and found you very attractive and interesting
very hard for me to tell you this but I do not have a choice now. I am
just hoping you can keep secrets.Please, read the next paragraph
carefully and comment.
About ten days after I arrived here in
Afghanistan, I was attached to a special tactical unit as a command
relay engineer for an operation which busted a Taliban bunker and the
troop that went for that operation looted the bunker before setting it
on fire. They recovered over 150 million US dollars of the Taliban
funding. The commander agreed with the rest of the troops not to return
the money to the authorities. They split the money among themselves and
in other to have me keep my mouth shut; they gave me 15 million dollars
which I rapped up among my clothing and have been hiding it since then. I
knew it would never be possible for me to leave the base with the money
myself as they have all kinds of security laser scans.
as I am about to leave Afghanistan, I arranged with that security
courier company who brings medical supplies in and out of the base from
the US to the RED CROSS without security checks to deliver it to you as
my personal effects. The box I mailed to you contains 15million dollars
carefully wrapped up in my clothing and paintings in a luggage sealed
and stamped in your name as the receiver.
There is no other way I
could have been able to bring it out from Afghanistan. I cannot bring
it with me because I will be searched and scanned before I leave the
base. There is no risk involved at all because the courier company is
reliable and will deliver it to you safely without knowing what is
contained underneath my clothes. I would also like for you to honestly
and fairly tell me how much of the money you would like to have as
compensation for the receipt. This is not stealing Friend because
the money is better in our hands than being used for guns and suicide
bombers. We can give a substantial amount to charity to clear our
conscience. Please, be honest with me on this and do not disclose this
information to anybody else until the delivery is made.
I only require your
1) Home Address
2) Full Name
3) Telephone Number
4}Your email Address
Please do reply to this my email Address for security reason firstname.lastname@example.org
Mind you all this re-gusted from you did not post any risk but only needed for documentation and delivery up keeping
Linkedin is unequivocally a fine tool – but it’s certainly not the only tool in both the recruiters’ and jobseekers’ shed. Most of the fake profiles are so painfully easy to spot; many are not. For the ones that are easy to spot – like the one above – I have to wonder about the “expertise” of the people who accept requests from the miscreants who create fake profiles of those currently serving in our Military (notice the spelling).
It’s time that we let our connections know if they’re connected to people with faux LinkedIn profiles; if any of your connections scoff at the notion of eliminating a connection, then I say simply remove them. If you have to use up an InMail in the process of verifying the #LinkedInLiars, then be sure to let LinkedIn know you want an InMail credit.
Above all, we need to keep letting LinkedIn know about fake profiles and the impact they have on our craft both in time and money.
LinkedIn – this problem is beginning to grow legs – and it’s time for you to stop running in the other direction.
For a great tutorial on how to spot fake LinkedIn profiles, you must read John Thomas‘ piece, Dubious HR Profiles & Unrealistic Job Offers At Companies That Don’t Exist.