How To Avoid Internet Job Scams
If you’re looking for work like many Americans, knowing how to avoid Internet job scams can help you a great deal on your journey for a job. Job scams run rampant online and scammers are coming up with sneakier and sneakier ways to hoodwink people into wasting their time on fake positions. Don’t fall prey to these Internet job scams; follow the tips below so that you can nab a real job.
- If it sounds too good to be true… Job ads boasting that you need absolutely no education or skills for a position, but can simply work from home and make thousands of dollars each week are just too good to be true. If a monkey could fill the position, why in the world would a company be paying out $100 per hour? All signs point to a scam.
- Watch for the fake interview e-mail. Many people have caught on to Internet job scams that offer impossible incomes for no work, so scammers have become a bit craftier. They often might state that they’re looking for talented people, but instead are just trying to find desperate job hunters to buy their kits and invest a lot of their time and money. So here’s how to tell if an interview request is a job scam: have they e-mailed you about conducting a phone or in-person interview without asking for a resume or any information about your past performance, skill sets, or education? A legitimate company would most likely want to know some of these answers. Be careful about accepting an interview if a company has no interest in knowing about your talents. The business might just be rushing to get you on board because they see you as a potential buyer, not an employee.
- Google the company. If a company is as credible as they claim to be, searching them online should give you pertinent information about the company. Watch the keyword area; if you start typing in the company’s name and the name plus “scam” pops up, then that’s an immediate red flag. See what other reviewers are saying about the company. This research will save you the time and money of investing in a bogus Internet job scam.
- Recognize pyramid schemes. A pyramid scheme is a business model that derives its profit from having members (or “employees” as they might call them) buy into the product and recruit others to then buy in. As you can guess, it creates a pyramid structure, where the people on top can make a huge chunk of change, but each new expanding member on the bottom makes less and less or oftentimes ends up losing money. These type of schemes are all over the Internet; usually the job scam tries to perk a reader's interest by mentioning that they sell a "revolutionary" new product. The easiest way to avoid being sucked into a pyramid scheme is by asking up front if the company expects you to buy into it. If they tell you yes, or that you must buy a starter kit of some kind, then it’s most likely a scam. Save your money and get a job where the company pays you, not the other way around.
- Be cautious of Craigslist. Sure, there are legitimate job offerings posted on Craigslist, but there also are a number of Internet job scams. When sorting through the postings, use the above tips to determine if the job is scam. If you’ve posted for a job or placed your resume on Craigslist, be especially careful about the replies you get. The typical scam involves an atrociously written letter about a payer who wants your services, but will only be in the country for a few days. Others might be sneakier, though, so always screen any “companies” first. If it’s an individual person offering a job, see if the individual has a professional website or clients that you can talk to so you can establish some credibility and peace of mind about working with him/her.