You’ve probably seen the advertisements littered on many legitimate websites, even some jobs boards, also in advertising space and sometimes printed and stuck on traffic light poles – they’ll say something like:
- Earn $80+ per hour working from home
- Work from home opportunity, earn thousands of dollars per month
Don’t let this put you off. There are definitely a lot of legitimate “work from home” job opportunities out there, however it’s very important that we help you identify the swindles from the sweet deals.
Warning Signs: Keep Out!
Here are some of the warning signs to keep an eye and ear out for:
- If you receive an email saying that you have an opportunity to make hundreds of dollars if you’d only pay an upfront registration fee, turn around and delete the email. Remember that legitimate businesses will pay you to work for them, not the other way around. These guaranteed employment scams make money from your fees rather than from any actual business opportunity you can join.
- If you receive an offer telling you of a wonderful opportunity to work from home by assembling toys, dolls, or other items if you’d only buy the starter kit from the company, steer clear from it. The way that these scammers operate is to get you to buy their “starter kits” and once you have a bunch of stuff put together, they’ll respectfully decline that the stuff didn’t meet their quality inspection. It doesn’t matter how perfect the toys look, they’ll never meet the ‘standards’ of the bogus company. They actually make their money out of the ‘starter kits’ and not from selling the assembled toys.
- If you receive offer to stuff envelopes for $1 each after you send money, ask yourself this, if they were a truly a legitimate company, why would they pay this much when they can get the service from a mailing house paying only a few cents for each envelope?Well, they’re happy to take your money and they then might even get you to advertise their own scam by having you put up flyers all around town. Walk away from these opportunists and don’t put yourself in a position where they’ll use to further their own scam.
- If you get an email from a company promising a list of organisations offering a lot of work from home jobs for a fee, steer clear of these – they’ll provide you a generalised list with names of random companies that may or may not actually exist.
These are just a few of the “interesting jobs” out there and clearly, they are not really interested in your best interests. When the time comes to look for a flexible employment opportunity, our best advice is to be aware.
If you receive offers through email or snail mail, or even in advertising in banner ads, Facebook and other popular interest locations, report them to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission. They will take action to make sure that the public is made aware of new and emerging scams.
Avoid getting suckered in by these scams by keeping these things in mind and reading through ACCC’s website:
- Becoming rich requires effort and there’s no guarantee to winning or achieving success. If you’re getting offers to gain thousands with minimum effort or a minimum fee, the only pocket you’re lining with money is the scammer’s.
- Steer clear from job offers or business plans that require you to pay an upfront fee, they’ll most likely disappear after gaining your money.
- Do not provide your account details or credit card information to anyone offering huge returns. You’ll end up having your account accessed or used by unauthoried people.
- Delete any suspicious emails arriving into your inbox, especially those asking for credit card or banking information. Delete them and label them as spam.
As parents, we want to make sure we cover the needs of our family adequately and the offers that these scammers have will be worded so convincingly at times, that anyone can be tempted. But, if you’re seriously considering an offer that you think is legitimate, do your due diligence and research the company.
Ask questions, ask for referrals, and look up their names online through government websites to verify their identity. Lastly, always ask for a second opinion, a friend, relative, or your partner, they might look at the opportunity from a different perspective, potentially saving you from the scam. Always seek independent financial advice regarding investment opportunities and do not be pressured into making a decision.
Above all, keep in mind, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.