Common Data Entry Job Scams and Tips on How To Avoid Them

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published April 5, 2021

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

If you're searching for an online data entry position, it can be challenging to determine which job postings are legitimate and which are a scam. Online scammers spend a lot of time successfully disguising their scams as remote data entry job postings, which are advertised in the same places legitimate employers use to advertise their positions.

Being aware of common scams and scamming tactics can help you protect yourself when seeking jobs online and can help you avoid getting scammed. In this article, we discuss different data entry job scams and provide tips on how you can avoid them.

What are data entry job scams?

Data entry job scams are the fraudulent job postings created by scammers. Job seekers searching for remote and work-from-home positions may encounter several data entry job postings during their search as more companies around the world outsource data entry work. Most data entry jobs are entry-level positions that require minimum qualifications and little experience. For this reason, it's easy for scammers to disguise their scams as data entry job listings. If you're not careful, you can end up having your money or personal information stolen.

Read more: Everything You Need To Know About Data Entry Jobs

Types of data entry scams

Online scammers use various tactics to scam job seekers. Recognizing common online job scam strategies and key warning signs can help you avoid getting taken advantage of by scammers. Here are different types of data entry scams:

Making job offers to gain personal and financial information

Many scammers set out to commit theft, identity theft or identity fraud. A tactic commonly used by scammers is creating illegitimate job postings and making fake job offers to job seekers. Many scammers use this tactic to appear less suspicious when requesting personal and financial information such as your social security number, driver's license number and bank account information.

Offering money

Scammers commonly appear to offer money to prospective employees as a way to request personal data and banking information. Another common tactic includes sending fake checks that appear real. Once the person receives and deposits the check, the scammers often ask the person to send money to someone else for work-related expenses. Unfortunately, the checks bounce and people lose their money.

Requesting money

If at any point during the hiring and onboarding process the company, managers or employees charge an application fee, a training fee, administration fee, test performance fee or request money for any other reason, it's most likely a scam. Scammers commonly request money via wire transfer, bank transfer, direct deposits and checks. Legitimate companies do not ask employees to pay fees or other expenses.

Read more: 5 Common Work-From-Home Scams (And How To Spot Them)

Tips on identifying and avoiding data entry job scams

Recognizing common warning signs for online job scams can help you avoid them. If you're having doubts, remember to always trust your instincts. Here are some tips on identifying and avoiding data entry and other remote job scams:

Research the position and check the job description

Always research the position and double-check the job description. The job description should include a detailed bulleted list of the responsibilities of the role. If a job description is brief, vague and makes it sound like a get-rich-quick scheme, it might be a scam. Legitimate job postings include the company's name and contact information.

If a company has an email domain from a popular email service provider rather than a company domain, that's another common sign that the job is a scam. Obvious grammatical or spelling errors throughout the job description are also key indicators of fraudulent job postings.

Here are some keywords and phrases commonly used in job postings by scammers:

  • Quick money

  • Little to no work

  • Free work from home jobs

  • Unlimited earning potential

Research the company

Researching the company prior to applying for or accepting a job offer can help you determine if a job posting or offer is legitimate. You can search the company's website and other platforms. If you're unable to verify a phone number, address, current employees or a web address, it's most likely a scam.

Once you've been in contact with a hiring manager, you should be able to easily find information about them and their role in the company on their website or online. If you're unable to, be very careful before proceeding with additional correspondence with the company.

Read more: 9 Online Data Entry Companies

Consider the communication methods

Though it's common for hiring managers to interview candidates remotely, interviews done through email, online chat or text are obvious signs of a scam. You should also be cautious about interviews that are strictly done over the phone.

Video conferences allow you to put a face to the name of the person you may have been in communication with and allows you to verify the information you found during your research about the company. Make sure that you know the name of your interviewer so that you can do additional research on them and their role in the company.

Research the average salary for the position

Though salaries vary from company to company, the national average salary for a data entry clerk is $32,143 per year. While there are specialized data entry jobs such as a medical coder or a legal transcriptionist that pay more, the wages for standard, entry-level data entry positions are typically on the lower end of the pay scale. If a data entry job posting includes an unrealistically high salary or hourly wage, it's probably a scam.

Ask questions

Asking questions to prospective employers allows you to gain as much information about the position and company as you need to make you feel confident about taking a job. Ask about specific job responsibilities and their expectations of you. If their answers are vague or make little to no sense, it may be a sign that it's a scam.

Related: 15 Signs of Online Interview Scams

Consider the hiring timeline

An overwhelming sense of urgency and claims of immediate hire are often key indicators of a job scam. If communication with the recruiter, hiring manager or company feels rushed and urgent, be cautious before proceeding through further stages of the hiring process. If a company offers you a position without verifying your work experience, asking for references or using other common vetting practices, it's likely a scam. Legitimate companies often require some time to complete the screening process before offering prospective employees a position.

Avoid paying for job-related fees or training

Scammers often ask people for payments at various stages of the hiring or onboarding. They'll say that initial investment is needed for work-related expenses or training. Avoid sending money online, through mobile apps or checks and avoid providing important banking or financial information. Doing so helps protect your money and information from being stolen by scammers.

Read more: Your Privacy Matters To Us When Job Searching

Ask for a signed contract

To ensure that you're being legally hired by a legitimate company, ask for a signed legal employment contract. Legitimate companies often take care of this step without you having to ask for a contract. If an employer is unwilling to provide and sign a contract, be extremely cautious about proceeding forward with the company as this is an obvious sign of a scam.

Related: 10 Data Entry Jobs You Can Do From Home

Research legitimate companies

If you are interested in a remote data entry job, there are several websites available that have vetted companies that offer legitimate remote data entry jobs.

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