There are many reasons that people may decide to start working from home. Child-care costs can be unreasonable in some areas, and rising fuel costs can make commutes unaffordable. It is important to thoroughly research work-at-home opportunities, as many scam artists have made people looking for work their favorite targets.
Spotting a Scam
When doing research on work-at-home opportunities, many people find that they are bombarded with what seem to be legitimate offers for employment. Scammers have gotten better at disguising their operations as “business opportunities” or “contract work." Not all business opportunities or contract work are scams, and research is key to knowing the difference.
Online scams are abundant. Telling a legitimate online job from a scam can sometimes be a challenge, but it is easy to rule out any job that has an overwhelming number of typos or poor grammar, as this can point to a scam. Laws in foreign countries do not always allow for prosecution of perpetrators of scams on the Internet, and the anonymity of the Internet offers a hospitable environment for scammers and thieves. Never do business across international borders.
Another mark of a scam is too much emphasis on the benefits and pay of the position and not enough emphasis on the work that will be performed. In a real job opportunity, pay is often not discussed until the interview, and it is a reasonable amount. An offer to receive goods and ship them on with the promise of thousands of dollars in payment is a scam. If a job seems too good to be true, it probably is. Pass it up, and do not provide any personal information.
If a job requires money to begin, in a vast majority of cases it is either a scam or a business opportunity. Business opportunities often cloak their business model in a job post, but in reality the opportunity can cost money up front and does not promise the ability to make that money back. Business opportunities can be good, but they require a great deal of independent research before making a move that will cost money.
Where to Find a Job
As a general rule, true work-at-home jobs will not be advertised on street signs or in the newspaper. Due to the highly technical nature of true home-shored jobs, they are advertised online to target the right demographic for their positions.
There are some excellent places to review legitimate work-at-home jobs. The best places to look for information are forums and review sites that include information on the jobs and opinions from people who have worked for a company. Some websites post screened job listings; others are purely informational.
It is important to do research on a company by looking into their records with the Better Business Bureau and checking for evidence that they've scammed others in the past. Do an Internet search with the company name + "scam."