December 12, 2018

Scam Artists Targeting People Working From Home

Scams targeting people who simply want a real job working from home are up a disturbing amount, as much as 250 percent in some areas of the country. This increase, officials believe, is tied directly to the downturn in the economy. As people get more desperate to earn extra money, they may open themselves up to putting money into something they wouldn’t have considered a year ago. They so want to believe they can get rich doing something, they’re willing to put what little money they do have into the pocket of a scam artist.

These scams hurt not only innocent people, but those businessmen and women who offer legitimate jobs and business opportunities. Scams are more prevalent, yes, but there are still plenty of real jobs around. People tend to paint online businesses with a broad brush, leading one to believe that every online opportunity is a scam. That’s not only false, but could lead job-seekers to ignore a very real job. Typically, there are two ways someone can earn money working from home: they can work for themselves or they can work for someone else.

Before you put one dime toward any business make certain you don’t only rely on some slick, professional-looking website. Scam artists know how to build a nice-looking website as much as legitimate business people. There should be a real person attached to that business, with a phone number and real address.

If you do invest in an online business, read all the small print, so you have realistic expectations about how much money you’ll make. Beware of businesses that require you to pay for information to learn the “secrets” of how to make money. If it’s a real business, training courses should be offered for free or at a nominal rate.

If you find an opportunity to work for someone else on a contractual basis, you should never have to send them money for training materials, software or to pay for shipping costs. No legitimate business requires the person they are hiring to buy anything. If they do, that’s a big red flag.

The Better Business Bureau puts out a list of work-at-home jobs that job-seekers should be wary of. The same businesses seem to make the list year after year. They include: data entry, medical billing, envelope stuffing, e-mail answering, and mystery shopping, among others. The bottom line is if a job seems to be paying a high amount of money for menial labor, chances are it’s a scam.