Make Money Online Scams: 10 Tips To Easily Recognize Them

10 ways to avoid make money online scams

Opening a discussion about the make money online scams is never pleasant. But such a conversation needs to happen sooner rather than later:

Millions of people research the best legitimate ways to earn money on the web daily. And most of these people are future first-time business owners.

Since they don’t have any experience, the chance of becoming a victim of scammy systems is high (to say the least). And that’s understandable:

These days, dozen easy scams to make quick cash seem to be everywhere. More importantly, scamming methods are becoming more creative and hard to recognize.

While some scams are easy to spot (work-at-home scams), others often seem like great money-making opportunities (pyramid schemes, investment scams).

In this article, I’ll show you popular easy scams to make money and teach you the best ways to avoid them. Beware that no legal scams to make money will find a place in this post.

Instead, I’ll introduce you to different types of Internet Fraud, show you how to spot them, and answer the following questions:

  • How to start scamming online?
  • What are the easy cons of making money online?
  • Are there easy scams to make quick cash?

This post contains affiliate links – read my affiliate disclosure.

How To Make Money Scamming Online

Hopefully, no future scammers are reading this post in an attempt to learn the best strategies to defraud people!

Speaking of scammers, let’s walk in their shoes for a minute.

After all, many of you probably wonder why scammers do what they do.

Well, here is why:

Firstly, scamming is an easy opportunity to earn lots of cash fast. With the enormous rise in the number of people looking for work-at-home options, gaining access to them is as simple as ever.

Secondly, the laptop lifestyle has become so desirable in the last couple of years. The make-money-online industry is flourishing right now, and that’s the field most scams have turned into their permanent residence.

Lastly, scamming people online is not that difficult to pull off:

10 smart ways to avoid scams online and protect your money

All you need to start scamming people is to create a low-quality earning platform that promises financial abundance but doesn’t deliver.

What Are Make Money Online Scams?

At this point, I’m sure you understand why hundreds, maybe even thousands of new scam systems appear on the web every day. We may not like it, but that’s the online reality we have no choice but to live in.

With that said, the last thing you should believe is that you can not protect yourself from scammers when you browse online.

Don’t underestimate the importance of learning how to stay safe through your online activities. You can’t just pretend that such money-making schemes exist:

Burying your head in the sand and hoping for the best will not work to your benefit.

Unfortunately, you can’t eradicate the scams, but you can learn how to spot and avoid them.

So, what are the make money online scams?

According to Wikipedia, a scam is a trick that aims to gain your confidence in an attempt to defraud you. But that explanation is not satisfactory, in my opinion.

Sure, gaining someone’s confidence is a skill from the “How to Be a successful scammer” book.

Abusing your trust is just half of the game – making you buy something you’ll regret is the other half.

Recommended Legitimate Methods To Earn Online:

What Can We Call A Scam?

what qualifies as a scam and internet fraud

Believe it or not, losing cash is not the worst thing about the make money online scams.

No, the tricky part happens to be that recognizing each scam is somewhat of an impossible task to achieve, especially considering the line between an over-hyped product, a bad product, and a pure scam is barely visible.

What do I mean by that? Well, here is a quick example:

Imagine that you will order food from a brand new place around the corner. Looking at the irresistible photos on the menu, you can hardly wait for your order to arrive.

Once you receive your meal and open the box, disappointment settles in because what you see doesn’t look like the image on the takeout menu.

If you feel scammed at that moment, no one can blame you.

Types Of Easy Scams To Make Quick Cash

Do you know what the meal story above and an online scam have in common?

I’ll tell you what – false advertising.

Since you’re not here to read about easy scams to make money on the street, let’s focus on Internet fraud.

Basically, we can divide the make money online scams into three main categories:

  1. Complete Scam: That’s when you pay for something and receive absolutely nothing in return, with no possibility of seeing your investment back.
  2. Sort-Of-Scam (The Over-Hyped Product): Here, you’re getting a product/service, but they are not what they need to be.  Moreover, they don’t provide you with the same amount of value that you expect.
  3. Start-Of-The-Funnel Scam: In that situation, you’re enjoying a good enough product, but that product is more of a stepping stone than a last resort. Meaning – to make it work, you’ll have to buy the upgrades nobody mentioned earlier.

All three types of scams will waste your days and, in most situations, your money too.

Common Scams

  • Pyramid Schemes: To sum up, a pyramid scheme is a business where a company recruits members by promising payments for luring other individuals into it.
  • Phishing: One of the most common types of cybercrime is phishing (deceiving people into revealing sensitive information. Sometimes, phishing entails installing malware).
  • Vishing (Voice Phishing): Voice phishing is an activity where scammers will try to gain access to your credit card numbers by calling you on the phone.
  • Fiverr Scams: Fiverr users should keep their funds safe and accounts secure by checking a seller before placing an order.
  • Scams To Make Money Fast: Also knowns as get-rich-quick schemes, earn money online fast scams promise easy profits with no work involved (Ponzi schemes, some investment scams).

Nowadays, there are many different scams, and the people behind them are becoming more creative. Still, there is a silver lining:

No matter how one scam may differ from another, they all share common traits. Knowing those traits will stop you from making bad judgment calls money-wise.

How To Spot The Make Money Online Scams

As I’ve already mentioned, living the laptop lifestyle is the ultimate dream for thousands of people. Being able to earn an income no matter what’s going on outside of your screen is quickly becoming a necessity.

But with the increased number of people starting to work online, one could easily see the increase in the number of scams appearing on the web.

When you have slim to no online working experience, it’s easy to fall into a scam trap. However, there are ways to avoid that.

Keep your eyes open for these ten red flags, and being a victim of a scammer will never become a part of your journey:

1) A Scam Will Try To Sell You A Lifestyle Rather Than A Product/Service

the make money online scams sell a lifestyle rather than a product

Quite frankly, I doubt that I’m the only one who has ever watched a sales presentation that goes like that:

Luxury cars, houses, and vacations are quickly filling up your screen. Furthermore, happy people enjoy some of the finest things and experiences life can offer.

Does any of that sound familiar? Chances are, it does:

A scam will paint you a picture of a lifestyle that is perfect on all counts. And you find yourself in a position where your guard is instantly down for the most simple reason ever:

You want to do what the people you’re watching are doing.

Now, if you surrender to daydreaming, you’ll miss the whole point behind such a sales video – a product showing you everything you want to see to connect with you on an emotional level.

People buy for emotional reasons much more often than for logical ones. So, always be cautious when watching sales videos like the one described above.

2) There Is No Clear Information About What You’re Paying For

Another common trait of the make money online scams is always being vague about the nature of their products. This trait has a close connection with the previous one on my list:

Yes, you’ll witness what the product/service would do for your lifestyle. But no matter how many times you watch the sales pitch, it still won’t be clear what kind of product you’re buying.

Maybe they will tell you that their system will provide you with financial independence, and you’ll be able to leave your 9-5 job tomorrow.

Or you’ll hear that you’ll never have to answer to a boss ever again.

By all means, it doesn’t matter how a scam product succeeds in distracting you from the fact that you don’t know what that product is and what it does.

What matters is to avoid investing in products without a clear understanding of their functionality.

List Of Scamming Websites Or Low-Quality Products To Avoid:

3) You Don’t Know What You’ll Be Doing

Once you start researching ways to make money online, it won’t take long to land on the official website of some scammy product.

Often, that product has no intention of letting you know how you’ll be earning your income. Let me elaborate further:

Generally speaking, a scam will tell you you’ll receive money in your bank account soon. Many scams might even try to persuade you that it will happen faster than you can imagine.

Meanwhile, these scams will not explain what you’ll have to do to earn that cash.

Unfortunately, such scams are everywhere online right now. Do yourself a favor and don’t invest in online platforms that can’t satisfactorily explain your new job description.

Until we’re on the subject of online money-making scams, let’s discuss it a bit further:

4) You’ll Be Making Money Within Minutes

an internet fraud promises an opportunity to earn money instantly

Almost every online scam will state that investing in it will help you boost your income lightning fast. In other words, you can expect the shortest working time with a product possible.

Twenty minutes of work a day usually is the time frame most low-quality earning systems advertise to the audience. Yes, you’re supposed to believe such a product will never require more than half an hour of work.

According to the scammy systems, doing that little would be enough to deliver instant results once you purchase their products.

Keep your eyes open for earning platforms that promise the opportunity to make thousands of dollars in less than an hour.

Now, common sense will tell you that no legitimate way to work online could offer you the same deal.

Then again, the dream sequence from point one in this article prevails, and it’s all downhill from there if you let it.

Fast-Earning Programs To Avoid:

5) You’ll Be Earning A Fortune Without Working Hard

As a matter of fact, the make money online scams will be more than happy to inform you that you’ll barely have to work.

They will promise you that you won’t break a sweat to see your wallet getting fatter and fatter. On the contrary, their magical systems are all about earning money while you sleep.

Long story short, a scam will introduce you to the possibility of creating a passive income stream.

While earning passive income is real, building it doesn’t work that way.

Those of you with some online working experience probably know that a lot of effort goes into turning a source of income into a passive one. More importantly, developing a passive income stream requires considerable time.

Don’t believe in scams that try to convince you otherwise.

6) You’ll Be Using A “Done-For-You” System

I always have tons of fun every time I get to review a “done-for-you” product. It’s happening every other day – 90% of the scams will try to sell you such a thing.

Here is everything you need to know about this latest scammy format:

Firstly, you’ll receive a done-for-you system. That kind of program will never meet your individual business needs, though.

Do the owners somehow know who and when will buy their products to adjust them accordingly? Of course, they don’t.

Secondly, a “done-for-you” product is a landing page or something similar you can use to make affiliate sales. These pages barely offer any value, in my opinion.

Lastly, “done-for-you” systems are the reason why there is so much duplicate content nowadays:

All the people who decide to purchase them will receive the same thing.

Investing in a done-for-you money-making program will put your business at risk, so I strongly encourage you not to do it.

7) The Creators Of Make Money Online Scams Hide Their Identity

Before you decide to invest in any online earning platform, you need to research the creator.

Make sure such a person exists and check their credentials.

Nowadays, the majority of low-quality products use pen names and even fake ones to introduce their owners.

A fake name that hides the owner is always a red flag.

Think about that for a second and answer the following question for yourself:

If a product is so good, why its owner prefers to stay unknown? Likewise, why does a system’s creator use a fake name to shelter their true identity?

Scammer Alert Website:

8) Watch Out For Fake Testimonials/Reviews/Income Proof

most make money online scams provide fake testimonials

When you work online for a while, and a part of your job is reviewing affiliate marketing products, this is what happens eventually:

You’re becoming capable of writing a review in your sleep, metaphorically speaking. Let me tell you more about that:

Most of my product reviews contain a screenshot of a Fiverr actor. Are you wondering why I include such images in my articles?

Well, many make money online scams often hire actors from Fiverr to do a product’s testimonials.

You don’t have to take my word for it. Instead, visit Fiverr every time a testimonial seems ingenuine to you.

Feel free to do the same if you doubt the honesty of a product review as well:

A simple Google Image Search will show if a system uses photos of random people as pretend clients or owners.

9) Make Money Online Scams Like To Use Scarcity Tactics

We all know what a scarcity tactic looks like.

For those who don’t, scarcity is when a sales pitch uses phrases that will rush you to purchase something.

Think of offers that try to convince you that they will disappear in 24 hours or talk about limited available seats.

Basically, a scam uses scarcity for one purpose – to force you to buy it fast before you even think about doing research first.

With that said, scarcity doesn’t always mean you’re looking at a low-quality product.

Considering this tactic is a popular marketing hack many business owners use, relying on it is not always a red flag.

How To Know If Scarcity Is Legit

  • The offer is about a physical product: Usually, digital products have unlimited copies. When you see scarcity around a digital download, for example, do more research before using your credit card.
  • Limited Seating: Online events can accommodate many people since they happen on the web.
  • Are you buying a product or a service?: Scarcity is not uncommon with consultations, for example. Consultations depend on someone’s time and availability to work with you.

10) A Scam Is Usually The Start-Up Part Of A Funnel

By all means, most newbies believe when they purchase a scammy system, that would be the end. But it’s not:

Way too often, buying such a program will place you at the start-up point of a marketing funnel. And that means you’ll start receiving all sorts of offers that will push you to upgrade your purchase.

If the system you’re investing in is worthy, securing an add-on that will deliver even more value is totally acceptable.

That’s not the case when you’re dealing with a scam, though:

Then, the upgrades are useless and exist only to get as much money out of you as possible.

I Earn Such Commissions Every Month. Learn To Do The Same!

how I make money online

Other Signs Of The Easy Scams To Make Money Online

  • $1 trial: One-dollar trials are not always a scam. However, sometimes paying for a $1 trial is a way for the product to gain access to your credit card information.
  • Automatic renewals: Some low-quality subscriptions or membership sites have automatic renewal policies. Always read the small print to avoid them.
  • Are the comments real?: Click on the links in the comments section of the product to check if they’ll lead you to unrelated pages.
  • Contact information: Do you see a way to contact the owner or the team behind the product if something goes wrong? In case you don’t, maybe you shouldn’t buy it.
  • Money-back guarantee: Don’t ever invest in an earning system unless there is a way to receive your money back.
  • One-click upgrades: Clicking on them will automatically result in a charge on your credit card.

7 Ways To Make Money Online Without Being Scammed

  • Proofreading: Proofreading is a job that entails correcting grammar and spelling errors in written content.
  • Transcribing: Transcriptionists convert audio and video files into text.
  • Freelance Writing: Many online platforms hire beginner writers to create content on different topics.
  • Make Money Blogging: You can monetize a blog in many ways, such as affiliate marketing and ad placement.
  • Create And Sell Digital Products: An Online course is one of the best digital products you can create and sell online.
  • Affiliate Marketing: Anyone can promote products and services to earn affiliate commissions.
  • Become A Fiverr Seller: Create a free account on Fiverr to start offering any kind of service you want.

Do you want to earn more than extra income by developing a profitable online business? Check my Free Guide To Starting A Business Online.

Make Money Online Scams – Frequently Asked Questions

Is Online Money Making Legit?

Making money online is a legit opportunity anyone can take advantage of even without previous experience.

According to statistics, one in five people in the USA has earned cash from online gigs and side hustles.

How Do Online Frauds Work?

In most cases, online fraudsters need your bank and contact details to be able to scam you. They gain access to such information illegally through a person or company providing financial services.

Who Gets Scammed Online The Most?

Recent studies show that the younger population is more likely to lose money to online shopping fraud (not receiving the items they order online. Also, younger adults are more likely to report losses from investment scams than older adults.

Will PayPal Refund Money If Scammed?

Fortunately, PayPal will refund your money if you get scammed while using the platform. So, if you purchase something via PayPal and find out the transaction is fraudulent, PayPal will refund your money in most cases.

How Do I Turn In An Online Scammer?

You can turn in an online scammer by reporting them on

My Closing

We can talk about the make money online scams the whole day.

Unfortunately, they are here to stay, and there isn’t much we can do about that except protect ourselves when working online.

I hope the tips and ideas above will help you do that.

Now, what questions do you have on today’s topic?

Ask them in the comments section, and I’ll provide you with answers to the best of my abilities.

More Scams To Avoid:


  1. Some really relevant points are mentioned. I love this point “Sell You A Lifestyle Rather Than A Product/Service”. Yes, there are so many affiliate programs that promise to make you rich overnight so that you can spend your entire life on a luxury cruise :)!
    With a little bit of observation and experience, you can easily identify the scams.

  2. Now thois the most wonderful article on scams that I loved. Going to give your blog a shoutout on my blog site man. Keep up the good work.
    It was pretty insightful and definitely there are some major key takeaways.

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