WASHINGTON, DC (WUSA*9 Call For Action)-- The budget is stretched thin, the holidays are just around the corner and you would really like a few days in the sunshine this winter. If you are like many of us, finding extra money is difficult, so you think, why not work from home. There are so many online ads, surely there is something that fits your needs.
Maybe, or maybe not! According to the website RateRacerebellion for every legitimate job offer there are 60 scams.
There are opportunities and then there are scams. How can you tell them apart?
Distinguishing between a legitimate work at home job and a fraud isn't easy. However, there are some red flags.
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For example, an online ad that says no experience is needed and neither is a resume. If it were a real job, the company would want to know something about the person they were considering for employment. Crooks don't care about your qualifications because there is no legitimate job, just a fraud designed to rob you. Besides, asking for qualifications would limit the pool of potential victims.
Another sign of a fraud is the claim that you are going to make an incredible amount of money in just a few hours a week. Sure, and I want to sell you a bridge! One thing missing from this claim is a description of what you will be doing. The ad makes big promises but gives few details on how you will earn the money.
Another common warning sign is the requirement that you have to pay to get the job. While there are a few exceptions, generally you should not have to pay to get a job. Do not give out personal information until you have thoroughly researched the company.
How can you find a legitimate work at home job?
Familiarize yourself with the various scams and then proceed to websites that provide useful advice and information on jobs. There are sites that serve a specific population, for example the Work at Home Online Magazine (WAHM) not only provides a lot of information about jobs it even has recipes for working moms!
MORE: Federal Trade Commission Helpful Tips
No matter where you find a job lead, evaluate it carefully because scams can slip through the most careful screeners.
MORE: Internet Crime Complaint Center
MORE: Five Ways To Find A Scam In An Online Job Ad
In addition, if you find a reliable internet company that provides legitimate job leads, keep in mind that most of these websites have ads that are not screened by the site sponsors.
Do you hear from many consumers who have been victims of online job scams?
Unfortunately, it is one of the most common online frauds. A consumer contacted our WUSA*9 Call For Action line for help because she was hired by a company that sent her money orders with instructions to deposit them in her bank account, keep a percentage as her salary and wire the remainder to a variety of people. She became aware of the scam when the bank told her the money orders were counterfeit and she now owes her bank over $7,000. This scam has been around for a long time and continues to snare job seekers.
Written By: Shirley Rooker
Director, WUSA*9 Call For Action