If you are looking for ways to make money online, you’ll soon find free online surveys in various bloggers’ lists of good online moneymaking opportunities. Indeed, people can earn through online surveys, the reason why this moneymaking activity became popular. Such surveys reward its respondents with various incentives, such as money, on-site currency, and sponsored products.
However, there are some opportunistic people who find it profitable to defraud people with scams disguised as free online surveys. There are many ways through which they use their alleged online surveys to rip people off or manipulate them so as to make them willingly subscribe to their schemes. The most popular ones – to scammers anyway – are the following:
Asking for Money
First in the list are those quite blunt and straightforward scams that ask – or rather, extort – money from those who fall for them. Commonly, these scams operate online survey sites that ask for money during the registration process, or at some point during the site’s use. This is in contrast to legitimate survey sites that don’t ask for any sort of fee at all.
These sites are often known to promise in their advertisements that respondents can earn big amounts of money, typically in three or four digits, in a short period of time. Some even explain their rewards system in detail, so as to add a bit of realism to the tale. Such promises are too good to be true however. Although some legitimate surveys can pay a good amount for every single questionnaire answered, they can’t simply pay hundreds or thousands of dollars in a month, as most users are not always qualified to take a certain survey.
Surveys that Ask for Credit Card Information
Some surveys may look innocent, and may even look as such in their advertisements. The registration itself can be pretty simple, except for the fact that you’ll be required to enter your credit card number in order to get paid. For everyone who has been on the Internet long enough, this should be grounds for suspicion. Why would a site ask for your credit card if you can safely make transactions through sites like PayPal?
Survey sites that display this red flag are often those run by credit card thieves. That is, they aim to steal your credit card and spend the credits that you’ll inevitably pay for. To avoid this scam, simply have this grain of knowledge engraved in your head: Never ever give sensitive details like your credit card number.
There are more tame online survey scams, and one of these is a mere trickery. These are the bait-and-switch or “switcheroo” scams that you’d often encounter online. These scams are meant to redirect you to a certain site as you complete a survey, or do a certain on-site activity. The redirect often leads you to a completely unrelated site that sells you something, or puts you through some sort of loop to gather traffic.
Sure enough, there are still legitimate free online surveys that you can register to. Be aware that such sites do not ask for payment or anything, and are rather honest in their advertisement.