Work at Home Scam Bingo

The hardest part of looking for a way to work from home is to dodge all the scams. Today I decided to let you have a little fun while doing so. I’ve set up a work at home scam bingo card for you to play with.

As you go through the various opportunities, see how many spaces you fill up, just as with regular bingo. Not every job that has one of these symptoms will be a scam, but they’re definitely at a higher risk.

B
I
N
G
O
Zero/No Effort Required
Cash a check/money order and forward the excess back to the sender
“As seen on…” without a link proving it
Pay for recruiting rather than making sales
Stuffing envelopes
Work at home job offer sent to you that you didn’t apply for
High pressure to sign up now
Pay $6 to the person at the top of the list…
“Buy our software to get started”
Payment processing
Email processing
Quotes IRS or postal codes to claim legitimacy
FREE
(it’ll cost you later)
“All these are scams, but this similar program isn’t”
“Just post ads”
Palm trees, expensive cars, mansions in ad
Typing at home
Reship a package
Vague job description until you pay
Pay an application fee to show you’re really interested in the job
Job claims to be from a legit company, but the email address is from elsewhere
Data entry by filling in online forms (often actually PPC ad forms)
$7000 a week working part time
Pyramid Scheme
Suspiciously high payback on investment

How do you win work at home scam bingo? By avoiding scams, of course!

Sadly, there are many more ways I could have filled these squares. But it’s not a bad way to get started.

More Tips To Avoid Work At Home Scams

Knowing the obvious signs of a work at home scam is the first step in avoiding them. It allows you to rule out a lot of things with relatively little effort. I’ve written a post with more details, The Work at Home Job Seeker’s Guide to Scams, which can help you learn more about many of the common work at home scams.

New work at home scams appear regularly. Some are new twists on old scams, while others are so tricky that they’re hard to spot.

Some email scams, for example, so closely mirror what you would expect to see in a legitimate offer that you might miss that the domain linked is entirely wrong. Gmail is pretty good at filtering these out, but some still sneak through, and other email providers may not filter them either.

I’ve shared some of the scam emails I’ve received through the years. If you have Gmail or another email provider that lets you look through your spam emails, you might find some amusing scams in there too. Be very careful of any links in these emails, even if it sounds good to you. They were filtered for a reason!

I like to have a bit of a sense of humor about scams. It’s frustrating that so many people lose money to them, but making a game of it, such as work at home scam bingo, makes finding them a lot more fun.