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Educational Consumer Tips

Work at Home

Author: Better Business Bureau
Published:

Consumers seeking work-at-home business opportunities on the internet, in newspapers, through job sites, or unsolicited telemarketing calls should be extremely cautious before responding.  Companies often charge upfront fees, promise high income earnings, offer work that requires little or no effort, and use high pressure sales tactics.  BBB trends nationwide show that earning claims are often exaggerated and deliver little to no income.

Work-at home job opportunities often include mystery shopping, stuffing envelopes, promoting/marketing merchant credit card machines, blogging, training or tutorial services to build a website business, and setting up a website or a web mall to sell products or services.  After signing up with these companies, there is a likely chance that you will be contacted by another company with a different name offering to sell you “leads” or advertising  to assist you in your success.  Consumers have complained that they were charged anywhere from $50.00 to $60,000 for leads or advertising that did not produce results. BBB files show that companies engaging in this type of service are often unwilling to issue a refund.  Work-at-Home companies often close down abruptly and may reopen under a different  name.  For this reason, the number of complaints a Work-at-Home company has should not be taken as an indication that you should do business with them.  Remember, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

The United States Postal Inspectors regularly investigate fraudulent work-at-home schemes. Consumers should be advised that they could face prosecution by postal or other law enforcement agencies if they become involved in one of these schemes.  For consumers who have complaints, in addition to filing a complaint with the Better Business Bureau, they can contact their State Attorney General’s office, the United States Postal Inspector at (877) 876-2455 and the FTC (877) 382-4357.