ANDY'S CONSUMER TIP OF THE DAY: work-at-home opportunities

Updated: Mar. 7, 2017 at 4:25 PM CST
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MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - Since many of you continue to email me about legitimate work-at-home offers -- and since there's been a surge of consumers who have received unsolicited checks in the mail along with letters inviting each consumer to take a mystery-shopping job or some other work-from-home deal -- I thought it'd be a good time to separate the truth from fiction on work-at-home or from-home opportunities.

The easiest thing to remember about work-at-home offers is if they came to you first, they're fake.

If they ask for an up-front fee, for your personal information -- or if they send you an unsolicited check for deposit in order to "start" the job -- stop! Those are not legitimate work-at-home jobs.

But these are, according to Michael Haaren, CEO of Staffcentrix and the work-at-home job-screening site

* CUSTOMER SERVICE AGENT. This involves taking calls for companies, not telemarketing.

* INTERNET AD ASSESSOR. The job involves making sure search engines make accurate searches.


* ONLINE MODERATORS of web communities, Facebook groups and online games.

* VIRTUAL TASK FREELANCERS. This may require a little travel and mileage reimbursement for picking up clients' stuff, but it also includes online research.


* FREELANCE POSTERS paid to originate and post content on blogs.

The trick is telling which ones are real and which ones are bogus. I have you covered there. These are reliable sites for screening work-at-home offers: Click "Advanced Job Search" under the "Find Jobs" button, then type the words Work From Home in the "exact phrase" field.

One of the worst work-at-home scams comes in the form of a "mystery shopper" offer:  getting hired by companies to shop their retail stores and test their services or products. Toss aside any unsolicited mystery shopper offer. Instead, check into real mystery shopper opportunities with MSPA Americas, formerly the Mystery Shopping Providers Association of North America.

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