When you need money, sometimes you're open to any idea that will help you earn it. Scammers know this, so they run ads and post flyers around campus describing "easy money for easy work," such as stuffing envelopes at home, entering data, or being a mystery shopper for local businesses.
Check out these kinds of jobs carefully before signing on. Keep in mind that legitimate businesses don't charge money to hire employees or get them started in a job. If you have to pay a fee to get a job, it's probably a scam. For example:
- If you pay a fee to get started stuffing envelopes, you'll probably only get instructions on how to cheat other students out of the same fee!
- If you pay a fee to be a mystery shopper, you'll probably only get a certificate or worthless list of businesses to call. Legitimate businesses pay mystery shoppers to gather information. They don't ask shoppers for money. If you are considering paying to be a mystery shopper, ask about money-back guarantees; some companies will return your money in 45 to 90 days.
To check out a potential employer, go to the Better Business Bureau site. Enter the company name or Web site into the search box to find out if there have been complaints.