Though it’s natural to assume that parents who work remotely have it easy, it’s often not the case. Work-at-home parents are master multi-taskers. They have to juggle child care, housework, Skype calls, all while answering a barrage of e-mails. If you’re a WAHM or WAHD, you can totally relate to having a list of errands that only seems to grow longer as you tick items off one by one. Sure, not having to brave the horrendous Manila traffic or risk being robbed on your commute is a perk in itself, but there are other subtle dangers that you should still be wary of.
One of these is the threat of being duped by online scams and other modus operandi that target those who spend most of their work hours, or even leisure time, on the web.
Here are a few of them.
Even seemingly legit sites like LinkedIn have been infiltrated by scammers. If an offer seems too good to be true, it most likely is. Before accepting a job offer, make sure the company is legit. A good tactic is to check the company’s actual site if they really are looking to fill a certain position.
For freelancers, it can be extra tricky, so make sure not to give out personal information unless an employer proves they are 100% legit. A good warning sign is to watch out for offers that “oversells,” or emphasizes its legitimacy. If they really are credible, they wouldn’t have to try so hard.
With the sea of information being uploaded on the internet daily, it’s become more and more easier for scammers to pluck out details they need to build an entirely new, often stolen, identity to make purchases, transactions, reserve hotels, book plane tickets, or steal money.
To protect yourself from this, make it a point to be extra wary of e-mails from unknown sources. If it looks like spam, it probably is. Make sure not to click suspicious links, even if it was sent to your private e-mail address. Change your passwords every 30 days and refrain from adding strangers on social media sites like Facebook, even if you have mutual friends. Close your browser if you ever find yourself on a website that’s prompting you to enter personal information.
As a work-at-home parent, it’s natural for you to want to broaden your skills and knowledge through online classes, in order to get better paying jobs to provide for your family. But be careful! Not all online classes have accreditation. Don’t be fooled into wasting time, money, and effort on a course that’s a sham. Warning signs that an online degree is a scam are:
1. You’re not sure if the school is accredited. Here’s how you can tell.
2. They promise a degree through a fast and easy course
3. They require you to shell out a large amount upfront, even before you start the course
4. They pressure you too much to enroll ASAP
5. The school has no official website
Free trial offer scam
Be careful when availing of free trials of websites or apps, especially if they ask for credit card information. It doesn’t matter if they don’t charge you yet, because they can easily charge you in the future since they already have your information.
Disaster relief or ‘sick baby’ scams
These scammers tug at the heartstrings of unsuspecting netizens, hoping to trick them into donating to those in need, usually following a natural disaster or using stories of sick babies in need of financial help. Work-at-home parents are at risk because they can easily donate using Paypal, or online banking apps, since they most likely have accounts here already.
To prevent this, make sure to verify the source and information of the post. Don’t rely on simply one Facebook post or tweet, even if it was shared by a friend you know personally.
WAHMs and WAHDs, have you experienced online scams? Let us know in the comments below in order to help out fellow work-at-home parents!
READ: 4 Harmful things you should shield your kids from online
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