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Ignore fake online job ads that the World Food Programme is mass recruiting 50,000 people — more than double its current staff

IN SHORT: The WFP employs 23,000 people worldwide. It is unlikely that it wants to nearly triple its current staff, as links on Facebook claim.

The World Food Programme (WFP) is looking to employ more than 50,000 people. That's the claim made in a post on Facebook in January 2024.

As part of the United Nations, the WFP focuses on humanitarian activities such as delivering food to people in need.  

The post reads, in part: “MASS RECRUITMENT FOR WFP JOBS WORLD FOOD PROGRAMME (WFP). The RECRUITMENT form is available and recruitment has begun for all interested persons between the ages of 18 and 40 More than 50,000 job opportunities. All nationalities are eligible to apply…”

The post includes a link for those interested in applying for the jobs. The claim has also been posted elsewhere on Facebook.

But is the agency looking to hire tens of thousands of people? We checked.


Engagement bait scam

Clicking on the link will take you to a website (archived here), with the WFP logo. However, it does not list the vacancies. Instead, it provides an application form.

The form asks applicants to provide personal information such as their name, telephone number, email address, country and state of residence.

After completing this, the applicant will be asked to validate their name to proceed to the next step, where they will be asked to provide their full name and their level of education.

They will then be asked to share their link with five groups or 15 friends via WhatsApp. Only if they follow these instructions will their application be successful, according to the site.

This is characteristic of engagement bait: applicants are asked to share or comment to increase the reach of the post, but no real reward is offered. This also directs traffic to the site.

Africa Check has investigated similar types of links in the past.

The official WFP website, which has a different address than the one used in the posts in question, does not mention such a large recruitment drive.

WFP warns of scams

On the careers section of its website, the humanitarian organisation warns the public about fake job offers circulating via email, social media or online job boards.

“Many of these schemes consist of an alleged offer of employment or contract with WFP in return for the payment of fees or the providing of personal or banking information,” it said.

“WFP only advertises its employment opportunities on its global employment website or uses bona fide and established media, newspapers and online job boards to advertise its vacancies. Official communications from the World Food Programme will always come from emails ending in”

An important clue that the link in the Facebook posts is not authentic is that the WFP employs about 23,000 people worldwide; it's unlikely that it would want to hire 50,000 more.

To protect yourself from online fraud, read our guide to Facebook scams and how to spot them.

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