“Earn money typing at home!” You’ve seen the ads, now find out the truth.
First of all, yes there are legitimate data entry jobs out there. Just take a look on my work at home jobs page for some leads. But here we’re going to tell you how to spot the scams.
It’s really not that hard to spot the data entry scams.
The first thing to look for is the fee to apply. Generally, these are from $10 on up. They’re generally low to encourage the “It’s only a little money, how much can it hurt?” reaction. Remember the standard rule of work at home jobs: They pay you. You don’t pay them, except in very special circumstances, such as renting equipment for transcription and other jobs, and even then you should have the option to buy your own from a source you choose – not from your employer.
Many of these jobs will tell you that they will pay $0.50 per name and address (sometimes email address) you type onto their form. They’ll claim they are compiling mailing lists for advertisers.
Listen up, folks! This is the kind of thing that computers are far better at than human typists. Bulk mailing companies already have databases full of names and addresses. They often have access to basic information about said names and addresses so they can even do a little targeting as well. They don’t need to hire you to work for them.
So what happens to the money you send in? This is pretty much just like the good old envelope stuffing scam. All you’ll get back is instructions on how to run the same scam, getting people to send you money so they can get started in data entry. It’s just not worth the trouble.
I have listings of legitimate companies that hire for data entry here on this site. It’s a good place to start.
If You Get Scammed
First, try to clear it up with the company. If they are uncooperative, let them know that you will be contacting officials about the matter. Then do it.
- If you found out about the company on a website, let the site know so that they can take it off their site.
- Contact the Attorney General in your state or the state the company is in.
- Contact the BBB, both your local office and in the company’s state.
- Contact the National Fraud Information Center if this was a “get rich quick” or “easy money” scheme.
- Your local Consumer Protection Offices.
- The Postmaster if you received the offer in the mail.
- The Federal Trade Commission. The FTC has a Complaint Assistant website to help you file your complaint.