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How to spot a fake recruiter on WhatsApp

We’ve recently had reports of a pesky WhatsApp scammer texting people and pretending to be us.

We’re aware that they often go by the name Elisa. We wanted to confirm that there is no one working at Distinct called Elisa/Eliza, nor are they affiliated with Distinct in any way. We suggest that you do not respond, and simply report and block them by following our advice below.

If you have received one of these messages, please rest assured that this is not part of a data breach. The scammer targets random phone numbers, the individuals affected do not appear in our database. If we have worked with you previously, any personal information that we hold remains safe and protected.

This is a widespread scam, meaning many other recruitment companies have also been impersonated. These messages are a form of “smishing”, a term that combines SMS and phishing.

Below are a few telltale signs to help you recognise a scam message via WhatsApp.


How to spot a WhatsApp scam message

  • Our Distinct recruiters will never reach out to you via WhatsApp as a first method of contact. This is your first red flag to recognise a fraudulent message


  • Likewise, we will never ask you to send a CV or personal information over text or WhatsApp. This includes asking for your bank details, requesting for you to pay a fee or to make a transfer


  • If the message contains a link. These can contain malware so please avoid clicking on any links


  • If this is the first contact you’ve received from us and you weren’t expecting a message from our team


  • If it sounds too good to be true; think phoney guarantees, astronomical salaries or an offer for a job you’ve not interviewed for. (You may be an excellent candidate, but you’ll still have at least one interview!)


  • The fake recruiter uses a name that you can’t see on our meet the team page. Here you can see all of our lovely consultants and their legitimate contact details


  • Grammatical errors or general bad spelling


  • A vague or badly written job advert.


What to do if you suspect you have been contacted by a scammer

There’s no need to panic if you receive one of these messages. Just follow the steps below to protect yourself and prevent them from contacting you again.


  • Do not respond or click any links in their message


  • Do not tell them any of your personal information 


  • Tap the contact’s name in the top header and scroll down. Here you can select ‘block’ and ‘report’. This will flag their number to Meta (WhatsApp’s parent company), who will deal with it accordingly


  • If you like, you can also screenshot the message and email it to us at [email protected]


Thank you to those who have already flagged WhatsApp scam messages to us. If you’re still not sure whether a message is legitimate, feel free to give us a call on 0115 870 0300 or email [email protected].


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