As technology grows so does online work scams. In the four years that I have worked as a freelancer I was once a victim of work from home scam, even though I did not lose money. The trick that most of these scams use is to lure the victim or you that you can make large sums of money in a very short period without putting any effort. However, normal work from home jobs require you to at least work for a certain period and then they pay you later in most cases.
Online work scams are get rich quickly schemes where they lure you through an offer to work from the comfort of your home by engaging in simple tasks in a very short period but with large sums of earnings that mostly exceed the normal market rate, both in terms of time and the amount to be earned, for a similar kind of work. The objective of these scams is to extract money from you or require you to invest in distorted products. Historically documents show that these types of scams existed during the early 1900s and were mostly spread through flyer templates in which the victim was instructed to post flyer advertisements within a specific area to spread the scam. Today, it is easy for scammers to spread their message and reach billions of users because of the internet. The internet has legitimate online work opportunities that allow millions of people to work and earn real money from their homes.
Nevertheless, if you desire or are planning to work online, you must be cautious of these scams. Many of the online work platforms on the internet are scams (about 97 percent). Thus, you need to be extra careful when searching for online work. The difference between legitimate and illegitimate online work platforms is that most if not all of the online work platforms require you to register and indicate a post high school certificate, degree, masters or a certified experience in a specific field. Besides, majority of legitimate online work platforms require you to bid for projects/jobs and you only start working after being selected. Moreover, legitimate work from home platforms give you a time frame and the amount you will earn after completing the task. The work procedure is also transparent. Legitimate platforms do not lure you that you will earn large sums of money by doing simple tasks. In fact, legitimate platforms require you to apply your specialized skills to complete tasks. Legitimate work from home platforms go through a rigorous process when inviting freelancers to work and they must verify your credentials before allowing you to work. In short, legitimate online work platforms have a specific form of discipline both when applying to work there and when completing tasks. They can also suspend or fire you if you produce inferior work. There are different types of online work scams. But all of them have identical features: they all instruct you to complete a simple task and promise to pay you large sums of money.
Kinds of online work scams
Forum scams. This type is the one that I once fell prey to but I quickly searched the internet for more information only to discover that it was a scam. Forum scams involve spreading a certain link across spams in which the victim is promised that he/she will make more money if more people click the link. Anyone who clicks also receives similar instructions, and thus the scam spreads quickly.
Others include stuffing envelopes in which the victim is cheated to respond to a false job stuffing advertisement and required to pay a small processing fee.
Assembly of certain kinds of items, for instance medical tools or jewelry is another kind of scam in which the victim is instructed to buy specific materials to assemble a product for selling to the scammers but when they try to sell, they do not find buyers.
Medical processing claims is another kind of scam where the victim is cheated or instructed to pay for a hospital billing software, which are nonexistent since most hospitals have their own bill processing programs and only outsource to legal companies instead of people. Hospitals also have strict rules than the software offered by scammers.
Pyramid scheme is another common scam in which the victim is required to sale services or products, which are not viable.
Some scams advertise normal work forms but promise large sums of money as income while understating the required effort to complete such tasks. Many scams do not specify what the victim will work on.
Thus, you need to be cautious and critically think about anything on the internet. Research and ask before falling prey into these trips. Most scams have specific features or signs as demonstrated below.
Most of them require their victims to pay something before starting to work. A majority of legitimate online work platforms do not require you to pay anything but only to submit your credentials. Besides, legitimate employers do not require people to pay to get jobs (except specific fees for medical or criminal background check).
Many scams offer huge payments that cannot be linked with the kind of work required, for instance they can promise to pay victims $50 per hour, $10 per clicked link or free $30 before commencing work. Legitimate online work platforms pay fair wages based on the type of work performed and the level of education of the worker.
Besides, most scams employ anyone without a background check on the required qualifications, experience or skills and only focus on the huge income. Legitimate online work platforms mostly perform a rigorous background check before employing workers and only hire qualified workers for specific tasks.
Scammers are mostly unknown companies without a reliable client base to offer the required revenue to allow them pay people. Besides, scammers pick logos or names that are closely identical but not the legitimate firms. Moreover, they usually lack a known address or location and they mostly concentrate on employee recruitment, not the clients. Furthermore, most of them promise huge sums that are earned in a very short time. They also use fake web sites and news stories. Refer to the following references for more information.
More on this topic later.
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