KITCHENER -- As online-based careers and interviews are becoming more popular during the pandemic, Guelph police are warning residents to be on the lookout for job application scams and are providing tips on how to recognize them.

In a Friday news release, Guelph Police Service says it has received incident reports of job offer scams and add that these can often appear legitimate by creating a realistic online presence.

Scammers will often use a legitimate business name with an altered email address and gather information from those who have submitted their resume from employment websites.

They will appear friendly, according to police, and offer interviews through email, video chat, or texting apps before giving victims the job.

From here, scammers will ask for banking information, a SIN number, a photo, and address details. They will then ask to use the victim's personal banking account to deposit cheques and then make "payments" to clients. Once the funds are transferred from the account, the cheques will bounce.

Guelph police say that legitimate businesses will never use personal banking accounts for business purposes and meet in person at least once.

They advise that residents research the companies, some of whom even have fraud prevention pages on their website. Residents should never have to pay for a job or provide anything other than direct payroll deposits.

Anyone who believes they are a victim of fraud or a scam are asked to contact Guelph Police Service.