Remote jobs are becoming increasingly popular around the world. More and more people want to become digital nomads, working from home on a flexible basis. As we shift gradually towards a gig economy, freelancing and work-at-home jobs are steadily gaining in popularity.
However, if this is the route you want to go with your career, make sure that you don’t fall prey to a work-at-home job scam. These scams often target stay-at-home parents, college students, people who live in rural areas, aspiring digital nomads, disabled and elderly people, and other people who have legitimate reasons to want to stay at home while they work.
Read on to learn more about work-at-home job scams and how to evaluate a job posting to see if it’s legitimate.
Work-at-home job scams fall into two major camps.
The first involves asking you to pay a fee upfront. These work-at-home job postings can include envelope stuffing jobs, writing and editing jobs, mystery online shopping jobs, at-home assembly and manufacturing jobs, or cryptocurrency-related jobs, among others.
These remote working scams can come in many forms. In some cases, a work-at-home job scammer will ask you to make a wire transfer before you can start working for them, either to test out the service or to verify your identity.
In other cases, you might be promised lucrative remote work opportunities if you pay for access to a job board or online training. In still other cases, you might be asking to pay upfront for materials or products, such as the shipping of an item that you’ll be asked to put together.
Secondly, a work-at-home job scam might involve overinflated promises of earnings that may never come. For example, multilevel marketing scams often promise you untold riches if you can sell their products. Other companies might promise you a fat paycheck for filling out internet surveys, only to steal your personal information as you do so.
In many ways, to avoid a remote work scam, you should evaluate work-at-home jobs the same way you would any other job listing. If it’s not clear in the posting, ask specifically when and how you will be paid. Don’t give out any personal information if you haven’t verified someone’s identity and what organization they work for.
Finally, research every organization name you come across; there should be ample information about them on the internet if they are a legitimate company, including reviews from employees on sites like Glassdoor.