Work at Home Scams

by WorkFromHome on April 28, 2011

The idea of working from home sounds pretty appealing. Wake up later, avoid a commute and work in your pyjamas. Who wouldn’t want a high-paying, low stress home gig? Unfortunately, the fact of the matter is that there are more people willing to accept jobs like this than there are jobs available. This should not discourage you from looking for an at-home job, however, you should be knowledgeable when it comes to being able to discern between a legitimate job offer and a scam.

The first distinction we have to make is between an offer that is misleading and a downright scam. In your search, you will come across several opportunities that promise easy start up, high rates of pay and short work hours. Of course, this is often not the case and is merely a ploy to get you to buy whatever they’re selling whether it be a “start-up kit” or a bulk amount of their product for resale. The vast majority of work at home opportunities you’ll encounter at the very least will be somewhat of an exaggeration. This is to be expected and is generally accepted as a proper business practice, even if it is a bit misleading.

Also, when looking for employment online you should be very careful to make the distinction between a job and a business opportunity. While there is certainly a place for both, a job is simply performing a task for an employer in order for pay. This is normally associated with guaranteed income agreed upon before work is completed. Also included are jobs like commission based sales. A business opportunity is a totally different thing. A business opportunity is a sales pitch designed to convince you that by investing time and/or money, that you will be able to profit through using their system or reselling their product. While several business opportunities are both legitimate and profitable, you should know that you are not guaranteed to make money.

The most important asset you have in order to determine whether an opportunity is a scam is simple common sense. When being presented offer, simply ask “is this opportunity too good to be true?” It’s clich√©, but incredibly appropriate for the situation and worth repeating. Remember, even a legitimate opportunity needs to try to sell you. However, a legitimate opportunity will not promise unreasonable results and excessive salaries. A business offering you a work at home position for $50 an hour with no experience or skills required is simply too good to be true. Think about it, if you had a bunch of work for people with no experience or skills, wouldn’t you be able to get plenty of motivated employees paying only a fraction of that?

Also to be wary of are scams advertising jobs that do not exist. It is very popular on online classified sites to advertise a job that often sounds too good to be true. When a potential employee responds, they are sent an e-mail informing them that in order to be considered for the position, they must first submit to a credit report and are directed to a site that provides credit reporting services. It should be noted that while credit scores are sometimes used as information in a hiring procedure, it will never be through a third-party website. It will also never be the first step in the hiring process.

Another question that you should ask when considering a work at home opportunity is “how does a company benefit from hiring me to do this job?” If it is not apparent what you are offering in exchange for a job and income, it is very likely that your potential employer’s goal is malicious. Nobody who is successful in business hires people or gives away money for no reason. If it is not clear exactly how your involvement benefits the company that is recruiting you. It is likely they have sinister motives.

Another excellent resource for determining the validity of a work at home opportunity is Google. Simply typing the name of the company you are considering doing business with in the search box will allow you to see any instance in which they have been discussed by other online users. It is also helpful to search their name as well is the word scam to see where the two words appear together. You should note that even if it is a legitimate opportunity, often times you will be able to find a few people who have labelled it as a scam. It’s important to apply common sense to what is said by other peoples comments just as you would to your potential employer.

None of this information is designed to discourage you from searching for your ideal job. There are many, many opportunities for a hard-working motivated person to make money by working at home. The key is that you must not expected to come easy. You’ll have to hone and develop skills. You’ll have to work long hours when necessary. You will have to be prepared to research and survive in a fast-paced ever-changing environment. Whether you want to be a freelance writer, medical transcriptionist, Internet marketer, chat host or take advantage of any of the other hundreds of opportunities present in cyberspace. The key to success is the same as it is in the real world. Work hard, keep learning and be creative.

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