Virtual assistants (VA) are in high demand these days as many companies are looking for people to take care of their administrative tasks, customer service, and other responsibilities remotely. As a result, more and more people are looking to work as virtual assistants. But how can you be sure that these virtual assistant jobs are legit? In this article, I will cover some of the most important things you need to know about virtual assistant jobs and how to avoid virtual assistant job scams.
How Do You Know If a Virtual Assistant Job Is Legit?
Finding a legit virtual assistant job online can sometimes be finding a needle in a haystack, especially if you have no experience in online job hunting. But don’t worry, you can find a job that suits your needs if you know what to avoid. Here are some red flags you should avoid when looking for a virtual assistant job.
Signs of Virtual Assistant Job Scams
You Have to Pay for Work
Sometimes, you may come across job postings that require you to invest your own money to start work with the company. They may ask for a security deposit (to make sure that you won’t abandon work halfway), a training fee, or fees for a software program or other equipment. Of course, they will promise to reimburse this fee from your first salary. However, a genuine client may never ask for your money upfront. You should never have to pay a legit company to start working with them.
You Have to Transfer Money
Some clients may also try to get you involved in scams where they send you a cheque to deposit or cash and transfer to another account. In most of these cases, the client is using you to launder money, which can even make you a suspect in police investigations. To avoid scams like this, read the job post carefully. If the posting features receiving and sending money as a main duty, then this is a red flag.
Pay is Too Good to be True
If you know the job is not worth the salary they offer, then there’s a good chance it’s a scam. First of all, familiarize yourself with the rates for VA positions. Then you can easily recognize which jobs are offering payments that are too good to be true. In most of these cases, you will end up doing free work for the client. The client will find a way to not pay you – he or she can open a payment dispute in a payment like PayPal or send you a fraudulent cheque.
Asking for Personal Information
If the client is asking for too much information, be very careful. It’s risky to give them your bank account details, social security number, and other personal details. The client will claim that he needs the info for paperwork or to pay you directly. But sharing this personal info puts you at the risk of identity theft.
The Job is Offered Immediately
If a client offers a job immediately, without any interviews or asking to see your qualifications, then you should be careful. Sometimes, a client may contact you directly without even applying for a job. If this happens, be on alert.
How to Identify a Virtual Assistant Scam
Here’s how to identify a scam VA posting by looking at the job posting:
- The job posting has grammar and spelling errors.
- The email address listed is unprofessional (a professional email has the format: firstname.lastname@example.org).
- The posting only describes the benefits of the jobs but does not list the job duties.
- The employer details (address, contact number, etc.) are not provided in the listing.
- The payment is made through unusual methods (for example, via bitcoins).
If you are not sure whether the virtual assistant job you are looking at is legit or not, google the company name and look at their company website, social media sites, etc. You might even find reviews from former employees.
Before you accept a virtual assistant job online, always find out as much as you can about the job and company. This will help you to be safe online and avoid being a target for scams.