IT services firm to face court for alleged jobs scam

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IT services firm to face court for alleged jobs scam

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission is taking IT service and consulting company Zanok Technologies to the Federal Court for allegedly misleading jobseekers looking for work in the IT industry.

The ACCC alleges that Zanok placed employment advertisements on various websites including MyCareer, Seek and Gumtree, offering various jobs in the IT industry, when in actual fact what they were offering was IT training for which applicants were required to stump up $4,700.

Despite assurances from Zanok and its agents to the contrary, the ACCC alleges that there was no guarantee of a job at the end of training.

The ACCC alleges Zanok's conduct was unconscionable and misleading or deceptive in breach of the Trade Practices Act and claims the firm's directors, Darley Stephen and Vanitha Darley, were knowingly concerned in this conduct. 

The ACCC is seeking a declaration from the Court that Zanok's conduct contravened the Act, as well as an injunction to prevent the company continuing the practice.The matter is subject to an interlocutory hearing tomorrow (May 13).

According to an ACCC representative, if found in breach, the firm could be subject to heavy fines and damages which could run into hundreds of thousands of dollars, as well as potentially being ordered to insert corrective advertising and undertake Trades Practices Act compliance courses.

"With the global financial crisis the way it is, making misrepresentations about employment is a bit of a low blow at the moment so it's something the ACCC is looking to get a good result out of.

"Unfortunately, these types of cases are going to be popping up on the rader more and more, what with more people out there looking for work."  

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