Do Your Homework Before Working At Home

SS Member Image By drodriguez 07.02.09
Do Your Homework Before Working At Home
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According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor there are currently 14.5 million Americans who are out of work.  Many of us who have lost jobs, along with stay-at-home moms looking to supplement the household income, are the perfect target for the latest fly by-night companies.


Some of the popular internet scams today make it seem as though they are affiliated with web sites like Google and Twitter, but after reading the fine print (if you can find it), it becomes obvious that there is no affiliation.  Fred T. Elsberry, President and CEO of Georgia’s Better Business Bureau recently discussed some of the newer schemes making their way to you via fake blogs, newspaper articles, emails and web sites.  He said, “The pitch used to be about making money by sending e-mails or by placing ads on Google but now cash-strapped job hunters need to be wary of shelling out money for a dubious scheme that revolves around Twitter.”


The schemes work so well because they don’t ask for much of a commitment from their potential victims.  One of the popular schemes claiming to be associated with Twitter promises that you can make between $250 and $873 a day by posting on Twitter.  The company asks that you purchase a free seven-day trial CD-ROM with instructions. 


What it doesn’t tell you up front is that the “free trial” begins the day the CD is ordered and if the consumer fails to cancel within seven days of signing up they will be charged $47 every month to be drawn directly from their bank account.  But even if you do call before the seven days is up, it might not be enough to save you from the scam.  Consumers have reported that a lot of these types of companies often supply bogus phone numbers or make it impossible to speak with a competent operator.


The Federal Trade Commission’s website suggests that consumers always ask the proprietor of the business the following questions before considering an offer of work:


  • What tasks will I have to perform? (Ask the program sponsor to list every step of the job.)
  • Will I be paid a salary or will my pay be based on commission?
  • Who will pay me?
  • When will I get my first paycheck?
  • What is the total cost of the work-at-home program, including supplies, equipment and membership fees? What will I get for my money?


What has been your experience with scams on the internet?

How do you or people you know avoid falling prey to these types of schemes?

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  • junconventional By junconventional

    Some work at home will make you pay for a credit or background check. If people exercised a little common sense - scams would not be as prevalent there are legitimate places to work. has a listing. Most legitimate places to work at home function very much like brick and mortar places. Some allow flexible schedules, some are more rigid, you will more than likely be classified as independent contractors, some you are employees of the company, some have non compete clauses, most require a separate phone line with no features, some require that you incorporate your business. If the deal sounds too good to be true or is exceptionally easy - usually spells scam.

  • MrsMichelle By MrsMichelle

    It always makes me so sad when people are taken in by scams and so angry that there are people out there who think it's ok to perpetuate them. Personally, I'm in favor of the model that a job is there to pay me, and if I have to put up money upfront, there had better be a GOOD reason and a proven business model. Here's hoping people find a legit opportunity and learn to smell the scams and run!

  • pcampo By pcampo

    I have been looking for a legit "work at home" position for over 2 years and I have found nothing. I haven't been scammed b/c if it says anything about needing to pay for something I'm done with it.

  • MsFreelancer39 By MsFreelancer39

    This is very helpful I have been scam before where my bank account was closed. This made me very angry and appalled, people are so scandalous and sneaky.

  • Urbanmom By Urbanmom

    I had the pleasure of working for my former company for a year from home. I had to stop it however as my son grew old enough (16 mos) where it was impossible to dedicate a few straight hours to my position. The problem that I find is that Im trying to find something that is truly worth the hours I put into it and that I can do without stealing too much of my time from my son. Its a shame but often you find companies that ask for money usually are scams.

  • ffavela23 By ffavela23

    I've gotten scammed before. I really hope this info helps. Thanks alot.

  • christygirl By christygirl

    Great information. I am looking for a part time job that I can do from home. I work 45-60 hours a week but need a second job, I don't make much at my full time job. I don't want to be away from home any more hours than I already am. I will be checking out many of the sites recommended here. Thanks,

  • adelyn By adelyn

    I've actually never even heard of work at home jobs and think it sounds interesting. Though I doubt I would have the motivation to find a legit one ... Though I'm glad a few of you have one some!! :)

  • Saviina60 By Saviina60

    Nowadays if someone falls for these scams that say "pay only x" or "it's only $29.99", etc., then you're basically asking for it. How can one not know about these scams today!? Do your homework people - and yes, as small and as long as they are - read every fine print there is on EVERY page of the'll save you lots of aggravation!

  • resa1320 By resa1320

    I just don't go for anything anymore. People are so sneaky and to be honest, with the way our economy is right now everyone is trying to get a buck and will do whatever it takes... Sad but True, don't accept anything with out checking it out .

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