‘Work-at Home’ offers tempting after holiday bills arrive: BEWARE

By Robb Hicken/ BBB’s chief storyteller

Angela writes:  “I’ve been hearing about this concept from friends and that they are making money, but it’s not an Idaho Company.  Not sure where it’s located.  Is this a reputable company?”

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When someone comes upon a website that offers thousands of dollars a month working part-time from home, the temptation is to sign up.

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 help you in your success.

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 Digital (please view link above), search engine link posting company, spoofs the CNBC website with a story about a Boise Mom who makes good money working part-time. Read the blog from Patricia Feeney.

Work at Home Digital does not give a home address, phone number or contact information other than a website and email address listed. It provides terms & conditions agreement, and an earnings disclaimer, but no contact information.

BBB suggests using extreme caution when responding to such an offer. While ads claim high earnings and short hours with little or no experience, BBB files nationwide show no evidence of anyone making the promised money. These ads are rarely an offer of legitimate employment. Generally, these jobs need up front fees for information or supplies, and only the person who places the ad makes any money.

Consumers have complained that they were charged anywhere from $50.00 to $60,000 for leads or advertising that did not produce results.

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In this case, the company asks that you give credit card information, pay $99.95 for a 60-day money back guarantee for training, top secret membership area, top secret video and member training. The refund policy states: “In case You are dissatisfied with the product or experience problems understanding and using the service, please keep in mind that You can claim a full refund of the initial purchase made within 8 days since the moment of initiating the transaction.” And, it could include deductions for some product and service expenses, including money paid for domain names, hosting services, traffic amounts, website source code,  cannot be claimed back.

BBB files show companies engaging in this type of service are often unwilling to issue a full refund.  Work-at-Home Digital is not in the BBB’s directory.

Companies of this nature often close 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 a sign that you should do business with them.  Remember, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

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14 Comments

Filed under News You Can Trust

14 responses to “‘Work-at Home’ offers tempting after holiday bills arrive: BEWARE

  1. Mark Burrows

    Working at home is tough call. I have to agree with Mr. Hicken on this call. Still, there are plenty of work at home opportunities. Some of them do require training, education and materials. These thing do cost money, but they are generally run by noted and reliable resources and schools, and in most cases, you have to make the effort to go looking for them, they generally do not send out emails to entice potential work at home opportunists. They do advertise though.
    Other companies are looking strictly for people to spend time doing cold calling. This is sort of trying to set up appointments for the real sales representative or worker to go in and do their job. Such as carpet cleaners and other service oriented businesses. Also dentists and eye exam professionals hire such people as well since health plans seem to shy away from them because they are now considered cosmetic rather than health concerns. If there is a health concern, everything now is specialist this and specialist that.
    Still, cold calling pays you when a job works out, not the other way around where you get charged for a bad lead.
    My basic rule is to do your homework and research with diligence. Yes, the BBB is a good start, but we all have the right to make choices. Quick choices percentage wise are generally not the good choices. Well thought out, well researched, and well equipped choices are the best choices.
    There is a saying that states, there is no such thing as a stupid question. That is only true if you are asking someone who is intelligent, has compassion, and is not trying to manipulate you. Someone who wishes to take advantage of you, loves stupid questions because you will fall hopelessly further into their trap.
    Yet if you go in well informed, the roles are reversed, they will know you are on to them, and try to back out of any arrangement, and worry who you may have consorted with to garner enough information to have an upper hand.

  2. Pingback: TOP 10 scams of 2012 | snakeriverBBB

  3. maurice Houghton

    Work at Home Digital is indeed a scam. I complained and actually got my money back – by asking nicely of course! STEER CLEAR!

    • Mark Burrows

      Well some times it is necessary to make a clear distinction between a scam and a shady operation. A scam is highly illegal and it involves duping victims and still remaining anonymous, and hopefully without a trail. A shady operation is not entirely illegal but they do tend to avoid applying for proper municipal licenses and such to save money when blowing though your town. In a case like this one, I would tend to lean toward shady operation rather than a scam. Scam artists generally as a rule will not give back any monies whether you talk to them nice or not.
      In my younger days, before the advent of computers, in order to pay my way through university I took on all sorts of sales jobs that required that I buy a kit or even hand out material. This technique is often employed by companies that have independent workers in the field because it is a motivation challenge to at least make back what you have invested. If you discover you can’t handle the work, then you would feel ripped off. On the other hand, if you find that you are a natural at sales and getting along with people, then success is yours. My parents never paid one cent for any schooling past grade 12. I did so well in sales that not only could I afford my tuition, book, and other fees, I also could afford splendid off campus accommodations. I successfully graduated university with several degrees in Psychology as well as a Bachelor of Fine Arts as a kicker. Yet Psychology was my career up to retirement. After retirement I went back to school and received a degree in Philosophy.
      So, as I said, I am fully equipped to understand the difference between scam artists, and shady business operators. We have talked about it on this site openly. Take for example, the door to door or off the truck meat sales operations. Some of them are great, and some of them are shady operations, and break a few rules. They will get out of Dodge if the heat is on, but they are legitimate, just shady.

      • maurice Houghton

        Thank you for that very interesting post. I agree wholeheartedly with what you said about shady versus illegal – I certainly felt ripped off because the sales literature was misleading in the extreme – and fake news articles were used as a lure. I have thanked the company for the refund, and apologised for any misunderstanding. It does go to show that it is surprising what you can get if you ask properly!
        Again, many thanks and it is good to be able to consider the matter closed – and I am a wiser guy and thankful for the experience…
        Maurice

      • Mark Burrows

        Wisdom always comes from life experience. It does not come from reading text books. The key to using wisdom is not to let anger, hate, and vengeful angst eat you up. Paranoia is never the answer. What is the answer is to be vigilant, keep an open mind and take time to size up anything that comes along. Even in a moment of crisis, one needs to stop and think and assess the situation before making the next critical step. When you get emails, material in the post, and phone calls, you have every right to do your own research and investigation and ask questions when you get those annoying phone calls. Go on the offense, not on the defense. Most phone solicitors are not prepared or mentally equipped to answer a battery of questions that they have not led you to ask.
        My favorite thing, and yes it is not nice, but it is a show stopper, is when I get a caller. I ask them what city they are calling from, well since most of them are off shore, they will use any well know North American city. If you have your google open, just start asking about points of interest and such in a friendly manner, and when you trip up the caller who can’t identify the most obvious tourist attractions, You can simply say, it is beneath you to deal with someone who can not be honest enough to tell what city they are calling from, which is both insulting and condescending because everyone is completely aware that telemarketing has been sold overseas. I am not racial, nor would I judge where you live, I just wished for a simple truth, and you started with false information. Please remove me from your calling list or I will petition for an investigation into the parent company you represent do to your misrepresentation.
        This tactic has never failed me yet. We all have rights by due process to have things investigated. That is why Better Business Bureau exists.
        As I have mentioned before, I do not even live in this area, or even in this country, I am little more up North and to the west over the 49th parallel out side of Vancouver B.C. Canada, but my dedication to this site is because of the unique format and the splendid talents of their storytellers and editors. So far they have given me free reign to agree or disagree with statements made, and bring my thought process into the mix.
        Someone should hand out an award to this site.

    • Jinnie Thamphiwathana

      Hi Maurice,

      I just did it by my stupidity too, so could you please advise me which way you did or which web address you sent to as I could not find it.

  4. Louise

    Work at Home Digital is using hacking tactics to get their word out. My yahoo account was hacked, and every person on my email list received an email with a link to Work at Home Digital website. Who would I complain to – I can’t find any contact information.

    • Mark Burrows

      There is not too many people to complain to. We are all caught up in a web of bureaucracy. Too many senators are campaigning to have to right to peek into your privacy through the internet in order to catch you in the process of downloading a movie or a song, for you are robbing the capitalists from greater gains than the already multi-millions or billions they already have. Governments seem to tire of been seen in the light of democracy where the citizens make the choices who should represent them in seats of political power, and then if they fail to do a good job, have them removed by due process. Now senators plot against the citizens in the house like dictators and try to take away the very reason such countries exist, freedom and rights against oppression. The freedom of speech, the right to practice our own faiths and beliefs. The right to protect our home and family.
      Until these battles on The Hill are resolved, and the senate is put on the right course to protect voters and taxpayers instead of harassing them, which is insane by the way, will they create more resources to help track the very criminals that attack the innocent, elderly, and curious people and pick their pockets clean.
      Let me make it more simple. Governments set budgets, but what you don’t generally know is they set them after they have spent their lion’s share. The cost of study groups, expert opinion, testing, for every concept or idea they can think up costs billions of dollars, maybe trillions. Worse, and you know they need to keep things highly secure and secret, not because they do not wish it leaking to foreign interests. The truth is, they do not wish you to know if a project fails or does not pan out, they have wasted a great deal of your tax dollars, not to mention monies they have borrowed from other countries. Nonsense is often the cause of fiscal financial ruin. So, scam artists are having a strong run because you are already under attack from your own government who is being greased by the entertainment industry.

    • Mark Burrows

      That is the downside to clicking on any link, they can plant tiny little spyware devices in your registry and they are a real pain to remove, a lot of registry cleaners, will overlook them. Manual searching through your registry is required. Do not ever attempt this unless you know exactly how to do it, and how to search and delete these pests. There are plenty of online forums that can teach you how this is done. Use your search engine for tips on manually removing malicious entries in your registry. If you are not sure, appeal to a relative or a close friend you can trust to help you.

  5. rebecca east

    Patricia Feeney, in the ads posted on the fake CNBC website seems to live in whatever city you happen to have your internet service registered. I have found her in several cities in Georgia, Idaho and even in the U.K. Please be aware of any offers of at home employment and how they can be non-producing at best and outright scams at worst. Research and be sure what you are getting in to is legit, legal and will produced the promosed results!

  6. maurice Houghton

    That is right, she now lives in Penang island, and the week before that on the mainland of Malaysia at Bukit Mertajam. STEER CLEAR!

  7. maurice Houghton

    Bottom line, BEWARE! Do not part with cash to obtain information which is freely available from Moreniche or Clickbank. If something looks too good to be true, it nearly always IS!

  8. Hi Jinnie and others- I complained by saying I was very unhappy as the claims made in the advert were wimply not true and that it was NOT possible to set up the business and make money in an afternoon or a matter of hours, and politely asked for a refund. The web address is support@homeprojectmembers.com and the person was Lana.. They also wanted the first and last four digits of the card used to make the original purchase and the Email address used to make the order. Hope this helps. Maurice

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