Online job scams can make your dream of working from home harder to reach. We all dream of working in the comforts of our home, where we can just be ourselves. Work while on pajamas. Have ourselves as our own boss.
Many of us see working freelance as a sense of freedom. Free from the dreading traffic hours, free from being tied to an 8-hour working shift, free to wear comfortable clothes, and have full freedom to hold our precious time. Being able to work from home is in itself its own perk. Depending on your work and client, there are also training, incentives, vacation leaves, and room for growth. Such an enticing offer, right? But, before you get at the end of the rainbow, you need to pass through a series of rains and storms.
The Stakes Are High
Finding work and enjoying this lifestyle is not as easy as you think. It takes a lot of hard work, perseverance, and grit to be part of the freelancing market. The competition is high.
Depending on your niche and experience, finding a job can be a tedious process. Finding the perfect client could be like finding a needle in a haystack. Not only that, online job scams makes it even harder. I hate to break it to you, but job scams are rampant nowadays. Especially in the online world.
Online Job Scammers Get The Best Out of You
Job scams are more frequent with online jobs. You have to be more careful in dealing with online employers. You’ve got to determine if you are talking to a legitimate employer. Scammers often disguise themselves, to get the best out of you.
They would steal your identification. They would ask you to provide details like credit card numbers, access to your social media accounts, and government identification references. Through your information, they will be able to use your identity for cyber crimes and illegal transactions. In a way, you’ll end up being a victim of identity theft. Be vigilant and smart.
As a neophyte in the field, how can you avoid possible online scams? We have prepared five tips on how you can identify and avoid online job scammers:
1. Do a company background check
Applying through online job platforms does not guarantee security. There are scammers even on these platforms!
One way to check the legitimacy of a company is to check their website. Google is your best friend in this situation. Look for the reviews about the organization. There are reviews you can find online straight from the individuals working for the company. You can also opt to check their social media presence. If there are no reviews, social media presence, and website, then there is a possibility that it is a scam.
2. Do not hesitate to ask questions
Every hiring process involves an interview with the employer. It could be in the form of a video call, voice call, or chat interview depending on the preference of the employer. Aside from the general rule to have confidence, may as well, be confident to ask questions to the interviewer too. Ask about the company, its top revenue source, and how it operates. In a way, it could instill to the interviewer that you are interested too. You can also humbly ask, “where is your corporate headquarters located?”
Remember this: A legitimate employer is always willing to walk you through their business and entertain your questions.
3. Never shell out money. Ever.
With legitimate employers, training is free. It is an investment for them. However, if you are asked to pay for your practice, then it is time to draw the line. That is a trap!
A true employer uses their resources and money for the training of their employees. They do not easily engage in requiring application fees or processing fees. If it asks for your financial information or to send money to a third-party using your credit card, that is a red flag. There are also disguised employers who will require you to use your Facebook account for various posts and transactions. Eventually, they’ll get a hold of your password, allowing them to do malicious transactions out of your expense. It doesn’t merely happen to Facebook but also in other social media platforms like Instagram and Twitter.
4. Check the online job description carefully
It is a must to understand the job description thoroughly. It should be detailed information, usually laid out in bullet form. Check if you will be receiving a salary or commission.
See to it that you take note of how much, how, and when you will be paid. Where applicable, there should be a legitimate contract. Be keen even on the smallest details.
5. Do not be fooled by “too good to be true” offers
Scammers attract potential victims through “too good to be true” offers. You can spot the red flags if the job listing says that you’ll earn huge without doing much. It will make you believe in “easy money” schemes. Some even offer a huge amount for every hour you work.
Forget your aim to get rich the easy way. There’s no such thing as shortcuts when it comes to work and business. You have to start from scratch and invest in yourself. The same with online working, you don’t quickly get big on the field without learning all its workarounds.
Spot The Red Flags
Red flags are a no-no. It will put you at a disadvantage and leave you empty. To avoid falling into the trap, always be smart and one step ahead. Take your time to do your research to avoid being scammed.
Do you find this article helpful? Let us know in the comments!