The newsletter warns:
If you’ve been active on Twitter for long, by now you’ve seen such scams. Tweets such as “How I made $200,000 a month on Twitter!” are all too common.
My first reaction when seeing such tweets was: These are obviously scams. Surely nobody would fall for them.
But judging from the number of tweets and Direct Messages I see where people – real people, not fake Twitter accounts -- keep repeating these scams, I am thinking it’s more complicated.
Some of the people falling for these scams simply do not understand Twitter. Usually they’re newbies on Twitter – sometimes with dreams of becoming self-employed Internet entrepreneurs. Those with no experience in online businesses may think it’s easy to make money through online activity. But just like with any business – online or off – the reality is never as easy as it appears.
One Twitter scheme involves networks where people get paid XX cents for tweeting links to certain websites or products, over and over. But that’s a dicey game. You might be sending your followers to phishing sites or sites where viruses will be downloaded on visitors’ computers.
On top of that, you could get the double whammy: you destroy your own online reputation through sending your followers to get viruses, and then you don’t get paid either. Because remember, you’re dealing with scammers here – not upstanding citizens. If they are tricking people to download viruses, do you really think they will pay up?
Savvy Twitterers and social media veterans know better.
But if you’re new to Twitter and thinking about trying to make a go of it as an Internet entrepreneur, be aware of work-at-home scams on Twitter. My local Better Business Bureau offers these 4 tips for spotting scams on Twitter:
- The "job" is actually a money-making scheme and doesn't provide actual employment.
- The work-at-home scheme claims that you can make lots of money with little effort and no experience.
- You have to pay money upfront in order to be considered for the job or receive more information.
- The exact same tweet touting the program is posted by many different Twitterers. The links in such tweets could lead you to scam sites or install malware onto your computer.
Warn friends and family off these scams. You’re too smart to fall for these scams, even without warnings. Less experienced family members may not be.