Some Work at Home Scams to Avoid

By: Belief Redding

There are currently hundreds, if not thousands, of work-at-home (WAH) opportunities floating around on the internet, in magazines, newspapers, and on TV commercials. With so much information and opportunities floating around, how do you weed out the real ones and/or identify the scams?

Currently, the most popular methods of working from home being advertised usually fall into one of these 3 categories (in my opinion): SCAM, Telecommuting (or other usually REAL, Legitimate) Positions, or Business Opportunities.

Most of the ads you will see circling the net are either SCAMS or for Business Opportunities. I hate to even put those two words next to each other because most Business Opportunities are not scams. Nine (9) times out of Ten (10) the reason that you are seeing these ads are because of the keywords you are searching for (whether online or in the paper/magazine). I will go into detail about this a bit more shortly. For now, I would like to share with you what some of the most common scams are and, hopefully, teach you how to identify them and then avoid them like the plague (or Bird Flu)!

When trying to decide if an ad you are reading about working from home is legitimate, some of the following rules apply:

1. First: If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

2. Second: Check to see if the company has contact information. And check to see if the contact info actually works - send an email with a bogus message or call the phone number (if listed). Then, check to see if the company is listed with the Better Business Bureau (not always necessary). You can also look to see if the company or product you are interested in has any comments on Rip-Off Report.

The two biggest Scams I think you should stay away from.

1. Envelope Stuffing: There are many different companies and ads all over the place for this type of scam. [Please note: I have attempted envelope stuffing once in the past. I cannot say they are all scams because I haven't tried them all.]

The ad: Stuff envelopes from home and make xx amount of money per envelope.

The Skinny: I sent in my processing fee (which usually is in the $30-$50 range). A few weeks later, I received a letter from some company that basically wanted me to sell canvas paintings. The way I would get paid for stuffing the envelope is for commission on a sale.

Lost: $30

2. Data Entry: These ads are everywhere! Luckily, I did my research and got a response from an honest lady, so I didn't actually lose any money on this one. (Please note: There are legit data entry J.O.B.s which you will be able to find, see below).

The ad: Get paid for doing data entry from home. You will be paid xx (usually $15-$30) for each application that you process.

The Skinny: I replied to this ad and asked the lady how exactly we got paid. She was kind enough to explain (before I sent money) that once you paid your processing fee, you were to place ads on as many sites as possible (similar to the one above). This was the data entry part. Then you would get paid (usually $15-$30) for each person that signs up to do data entry. They also tell you this is 100% legal!

Almost lost: $15

Careers and Job Hunting
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