Word of the Week: Scam

Word of the Week: Scam

200 Best Work from Home Jobs for 2019

Wow! 200 work from home jobs for 2019!

Yes, the possibilities are out there!

What are they, and how can you find them?

If I were to attempt to cover a list that long I would be researching and gathering all of that data to the end of 2019! Then it would be too late to post that article! That wouldn't help you!

The best I can do this year is to point you in the right direction to the screaming content already out there!

As always, do your homework with due-diligence in order to determine the best opportunity for you!

#1. 100 Top Companies with Remote Jobs in 2019:
If there are at least 100 top companies offering remote jobs, then that means there are 100+ job opportunities from that resource alone! Be sure to check out FlexJobs for those opportunities. As they have in the past, they provide a terrific source for work from home remote telecommuting jobs!

#2. 75 Legitimate Work from Home Jobs for 2019!
Probably the most comprehensive list as far as details and types of positions. From Admin Jobs, Writing Content Opportunities, Educational Teaching Positions, Graphic Design, Audio Video Opportunities, and many more - the list goes on! You must check out "I've Tried That" with their long detailed list!

That's 175 opportunities, so where is the other 25 to total 200 of the best work from home jobs for 2019? I'll do better than that! Because, here's another resource offering 50:

#3. 50 Legit Companies that Hire Home Workers in 2019:
For freelance news and homeworking opportunities, check out HomeWorking Club's exhaustive list of possibilities to locate your work from home position.

There you go! The list of 200 225 Work from Home Jobs for 2019!

I increased the list to 225, even though my article was going to share only 200. I chose to do that, assuming there may be some over-lapping companies, or opportunities - essentially providing you a bonus of 25 more possibilities to check into!

Again, always do your own homework as you pursue the right opportunity.

Be sure the offer is asking you to jump through the normal hoops.

That's one way you can determine if a position is legitimate vs a scam.

Kids Earn Cash Money - Is it a Scam?

Some refer to it as, 'Kids Earn Cash' or as, 'Kids Earn Money'. What I found is this site: 'Kids Earn Cash'. The online search results brought up their site snippet which states:
"Kids Earn Cash lets you turn your social media profiles into money. Start earning thousands a month by promoting on social media."

What is "Kids Earn Cash"or"Kids Earn Money"? Is it a scam?

To claim that anyone (adult, teen, or kid) can: 'Start earning thousands a month by promoting on social media.' immediately brings questions of concern.

Is it just me, or does it seem to be an exaggerated claim?

Yes, one can make money from Social Media, but the fact they claim 'thousands a month' - from the get-go? They used the word, "Start" which implies you could earn those thousands relatively quickly.

Unfortunately a 'kid' or teen would be the most vulnerable to jumping into action with that offer!
Image from Google Search

My first pick of investigation was to head to the BBB (Better Business Bureau), and already there are many complaints posted.

However, complaints are not posted under the name 'Kids Earn Cash'. What comes up from the BBB is: "Kids Earn Money LLC" with over 30 complaints - already!

The domain for that complaint is posted on the BBB as "kidsearnmoney".co, and it would take more research to determine the connection.

The complaints listed had a common denominator: When the members attempted to collect on their earnings, there were problems with being able to do so.

Going further into research you would find many sites reporting the names "KidsEarnCash" and "KidsEarnMoney" as the same business.

When I found the site "kidsearncash" .com my attempt to click through resulted in a 'redirect' so I backed out as my browser stalled at the redirect notification. Therefore, I chose to not visit the website.

Do your research before you jump in! And as always: If it seems to be too good to be true it probably is!

Protect your kids and teens by educating them so they too can learn how to identify scams!

You may wish to watch this video about "KidsEarnCash" .com:

Work From Home Training Program Scam vs Legitimate Offer

Are you looking for work from home jobs with a training program?

Before you accept an offer, determine if it's a scam, or legitimate!

Let's compare the traits of both:

Work From Home Jobs with a Legitimate Training Program:

  • Experience and/or special skills will most likely be required.
  • A specific level of education/degree will be required.
  • The offer clearly specifies the job requirements and expectations.
  • An interview is required.
  • No payment is required for their training program or manual.
  • They will pay for your time during training.

Work From Home Training Program Scams:

  • No experience or special skills required.
  • No interview is required.
  • The entire process is too easy and offered to anyone.
  • Payment is required for the work from home program or manual.
  • You may, or may not receive an actual training manual.
If you do receive a training manual or so-called program from a scam offer, what is the manual that you might receive?

There are different versions of the scam. If you do actually receive a training manual in return for payment, it may be that they figure it will reduce their chance of being reported.

The manual or training information may be nothing more than instructions for how you can advertise and sell the same work from home manual or program, which is selling - nothing of value!

As you search for a legitimate work from home aka, 'remote' or  'telecommuting' position, play it safe!

Never send money for training materials to someone claiming to be a prospective employer.

A legitimate employer will not require you to pay for training materials or manual.

The work from home training program scam is one you can easily avoid!

One final point:

There are legitimate e-books offering tips with how to search and find legitimate work from home opportunities. This article isn't about legitimate guides.

Those e-books may be offered free, or they may be an e-book requiring purchase.

Take the time to learn the differences with offers so you can move forward into a positive direction.

Head on over to the FTC to learn more about work from home training program scams.

10 Ways to Spend $1 Million Dollars on a Private Island

"What would you do on a private island with $1 million dollars to spend?"

I'm laughing over that hypothetical question posted in a forum. For fun, it's deserving of answers so please post your comments. What would you do? 😎

But first the mysterious unknown variables, of which I'm going to consider two:
  • Is the island totally private as in a deserted island, and you're the poor rich soul that became stranded?
  • Is it a private island that you bought, and now you can spend $1 million to improve it?
I'm going to assume it's deserted! Therefore, the question, 'What would you do on a private island with $1 million dollars to spend?' becomes far more problematic to answer - for obvious reasons.  

10 Ways to Spend $1 Million Dollars on a Private Deserted Island:

1. Bury it in the sand and forget where you put it. Poof - it's all spent.

2. Use tree sap to glue each of the bills together to make a paper banner. Wait for it... there's a plane! Quick! Now wave the banner with hope they will land to take the bait in return for your rescue! 😰

3. Use the bills like wallpaper inside your newly constructed grass hut.

4. Save them for a rainy day - to patch the hut roof so you'll stay dry.

5. Use them for bargaining a deal with the pirates when they stop by.

6. Build bonfires with the bills - IF you can get a spark!

7. Pay and bribe the Monkey's to pick Coconuts so you won't starve. 🙉

8. Weave them together to make paper baskets for food gathering. 

9. Heap them high inside the hut so you can 'sleep on it' as in - figuring out how to get off the island!

10. Finally, they might become toilet paper bills! Ugh!

Say what? Another variable?

I just figured out the $1 million dollars may not be paper bills, but instead a bad check! 🙈

Money Tree

Are you the proud owner of a money tree? Wouldn't we all like to be! While growing up I remember the money tree my grandmother had. Fascinated by the fact that she had some sort of money tree, with excitement, I had to go see! I have no idea what I really expected, but it wasn't anything like I thought it would be! The reality ended in disappointment - lol. 😕

The money tree looked like this:

Say what? That's a money tree? How could that possibly be? It looked more like silver dollar coins, but I had thought it would look more like... dollar bills???

That was my first experience with the realization that, 'Money doesn't grow on trees!' 🙃

The money tree I envisioned probably would have looked more like this:
But, again, money doesn't grow on trees!
I had to get over it and grow up - like a tree!

A note in closing: The Money Tree is different from the Chinese Money Plant.

Spam Email Asking for Money - One Solution

1 Easy Way to Stop Emails Asking for Money!

Which comes first? They take your money? Or, they send you spam?

Hmm, perhaps the answer depends on what we fell for! Let's go with the second choice and assume you received email spam asking for money. In a perfect digital world there wouldn't be spam email, but we won't see that happening anytime soon. For now, our best strategy is to reduce the amount of spam we might receive, which also eliminates some of the chances of losing money to their tricks in our email.

How can we reduce fraudulent email offers asking us for money?

You've most likely heard many of the typical answers, one of which may be, "Be careful with what you sign up for!" In the digital world it's known as 'subscribe' to. For legitimate sites and offers it's all good. We fill out forms and select a button and boom, it's done - we've given out our sacred email address. But what about other things you have subscribed to?

But... Did you check if you were signed up to receive emails that you didn't subscribe to?

Now that's a tricky question! If you didn't subscribe for something how would you know, or what would you research to find out? I know what you're probably thinking by now, "There's a whole lot of questions, but what about the answers!" Well, it's complicated, and I wanted to keep this short so I will give you one EASY TO DO SOLUTION to potentially reduce spam emails asking for money. And, this will also make your browsing safer!

One solution to reduce or eliminate spam email in your box:

Since using this one solution myself, I've had some days with zero spam emails! From my opinion - that's amazing results from exercising this one solution! So read on if you want to eliminate your spam...

This one solution pertains to anyone who has a Google account, so it's an easy solution for many people! And the answer is.... wait for it - lol. If you have a Google account you have access to Google Groups, which offers forums for those who wish to use that service. However, the default settings may leave you vulnerable to be signed up for groups you do not wish to be subscribed to! And, some groups are set up by spammers for the sole purpose to send you emails, and/or potentially hijack your browsing!

Here's the fix: Check your Google Groups settings to determine your group subscriptions! You may be surprised what you have been subscribed to, without your knowledge - if you never changed the default settings! Reduce your potential for spam with these easy steps - images included for an easy tutorial!
  1. Go to 'Google Groups'. The page looks like this at the top left:
  2. Select 'My groups' to see what you are subscribed to.
  3. Are you subscribed to a group you didn't sign up for?
  4. Unsubscribe to groups you didn't subscribe to!
  5. Proceed to step 6 to make sure it doesn't happen again!
How to change your Google Group 'Settings for all groups':
  1. Look at the top right side for the icon - as shown in the image below.
  2. Select 'My global settings' from the menu.

"My global settings" opens a page of options, shown in the next image. Uncheck the default settings boxes where it says, "Add/Invite settings". Then select 'Save' at the top of the page.

Again, be sure you opt out of (uncheck) the two boxes that 'allow group managers' to directly add and invite you to their groups! That's how you may have been subscribed to a group you don't want to be in, which can = spam in your email box!

Unfortunately, the Google default setting automatically allowed group managers (spammers) to subscribe you! The default setting can result in spam email and potentially browser hijacks.

If at any time, you know of a legitimate group manager who wishes to add you, you can always go back and manually make the change to allow the addition or invitation to come through. Thereafter you would then want to go back and uncheck the boxes again.

You may also wish to go back to the menu and select, "All topic email subscriptions", and make sure you're not subscribed for emails you do not wish to receive! And, if you have a Yahoo email, you may wish to check the default settings for Yahoo Groups.

You just learned one way you may have been subscribed to something you don't want to be involved with, which may have resulted in spam emails, and some of which were asking for money! If this was of help to you, let me know with your comment and share this with a friend. If you still need more insight, check out more ways to reduce the spam emails from the MoneyCrashers!

Fake Check Scam - Fake Check in the Mail

1 Easy Tip to Avoid Receiving a Bad Check

The era of the fake check scam is not past and gone, as it still claims victims. My own recent experience prompted me to share my story of the promise of a (fake) check in the mail. Knowing what they were up to I by all means was not going to take them up on the offer, but instead was excited to share the news with you - lol - as it gave me a new article topic for Money Illusions.

Fake check in the mail scam works like this...

With the need to downsize some items I listed an item for sale on a popular site for selling stuff. The next day I received a text message from a potential buyer. Their question was fairly normal communication that one would anticipate from a prospect to a seller; "Do you still have the item available?" Assuming it may be a legit customer I responded with a simple, "Yes, I still have it available." I didn't hear back from them until the next day when they responded with another text, "Okay! I don't have any issue with the price you are asking! Just send me your address so I can mail the check to have you hold the item for me!" It was obvious that it was a scam, and especially since I wasn't offering shipping but local pick-up only, this was a major red flag!

Why would a scammer mail a (fake) check?

The fake check scammer might not even care if you were to actually send the merchandise to them - or not. Remember from my experience that the person quickly stated they 'don't have an issue with the price.' - because it isn't the merchandise they were interested in, so they had no need to negotiate the asking price! What they're hoping for is that their victim will cash the fake check and send a check back to them. Why would a seller send a check to them? Because the check would be written for more than the actual asking price of the merchandise! A seller would possibly think it was in error and send the overage back to the buyer. Or, the buyer might include instructions that may go like this: "I only had this money order, which is $200.00 more than what you were asking, so kindly return the extra to me." Unfortunately for the seller the fake check won't clear the bank, and they will be out any money they sent the buyer scammer.

When you list items for sale online - be aware of the 'fake check in the mail scam'. Use your common sense, and don't get excited about a buyer wanting to send you a (fake) check in the mail! It's funny money until you take it to the bank, then it's no laughing matter.

Fake currency-1000 dollar bill

Bait and Switch Pricing Scam

Businesses rely on a steady flow of prospects, customers, and a profit. Unfortunately, some businesses utilize illegal strategies as an attempt to boost their profits. One illegal method some retail establishments use is known as 'bait and switch', which is regulated by the FTC - aka the Federal Trade Commission.

Some consumers may not be aware that bait and switch isn't limited to purchasing a product from a retail establishment, but it can also occur at a restaurant. Have you been a victim of bait and switch? The following example may help you to determine if you have.

Imagine a restaurant advertises on their menu that the individual one-serving meal is 'served with rice and salad'. However, when you pick up your meal the order doesn't match what their menu states is included! Two combo meals were ordered to go, both of which were to be 'served with rice and salad'. The individual one-serving salad is in a separate container from the hot food, but when two combination meals were ordered only one individual serving of salad was received.

You know how it is when you're in a hurry with to-go food; you may not be paying attention to what was put inside the to-go bag. But then upon returning home it's discovered you were only provided one salad, and it's obviously only one-serving.

The first time this occurred you may have thought the restaurant simply overlooked including two salads, but then imagine it happened a second time when returning many months later. However, when the cashier is questioned as to where the other salad is they replied that you only get one salad with the two meals! Say what?

Imagine you ordered two meals and their menu states (advertises), each meal is 'served with rice and salad', their pricing is for each individual meal and therefore it is bait and switch to only serve you one salad for two meals purchased! The exception would be if you requested to not have the second salad, which they should consider a price reduction for providing you less food, or perhaps offer an equivalent substitution.

How do you determine if it's bait and switch? Let's take a look at how the FTC determines if an ad is deceptive, and then we'll compare it to the advertised menu items in this example. The FTC states many guidelines to determine if an advertisement is deceptive, but this is the key point that is applicable to this situation:
The FTC looks at the ad from the point of view of the "reasonable consumer" - the typical person looking at the ad. Rather than focusing on certain words, the FTC looks at the ad in context - words, phrases, and pictures - to determine what it conveys to consumers.
It's fairly cut and dry to determine that the restaurant menu advertised each meal is 'served with rice and salad', but if you only received one salad for two meals, and they deliberately cheated the consumer out of the second salad that would be an example of bait and switch!

As per the FTC's description of deceptive advertising, if what is conveyed to the consumer is contradictory to what they actually receive for the price advertised, it's bait and switch! The next time you order a meal, or purchase an item advertised, pay attention to what you receive in exchange for what you paid. If you're in doubt and the establishment refused to provide a good explanation, review the FTC deceptive advertising guidelines to determine if you were a victim of the old bait and switch scam.