"Currently there's a 54-to-1 scam ratio among work-at-home job leads on the Internet," said Staffcentrix co-founder, Christine Durst, who screens up to 5,000 online job offers every week and rates them on her Web site. "That means that for every 55 [work-at-home] job leads that you find on the Internet, 54 of them are going to be outright scams or downright suspicious," warns Durst. Not only is this true for home based job opportunities, it is true for those home based business opportunities; those claiming you can make boatloads of money with little, if any effort and simply "with the press of a button." The problem is growing in epic proportions, especially in light of the current economic situation. Otherwise cautious people are being sucked into situations that give the promise of financial security. Sadly many people lose time and money to many of these "too good to be true" opportunities. Some lose a few dollars while others lose thousands. This is not to discourage you from pursuing your dream of working at home. However, it is to encourage you to avoid jumping into a situation without doing your homework. Before believing testimonials, guarantees, amazing earning potentials, etc., research whatever it is you are thinking of doing. If you have to send money for a job opportunity - BEWARE! If you don't know anything about the company that promises you only have to work a few hours a week and make thousands upon thousands of dollars - BEWARE! Does this mean there are no legitimate and lucrative opportunities? Absolutely not. What it does mean is keep a level head about any offer you find. 20/20 Here are a few steps you can take to minimize being taken advantage of: Check out the people behind the offer. Dig deep to see if there are complaints against the company you are considering working for. A Google search can be a first step. Avoid any opportunities where you cannot easily get in touch with someone from the company. Even when you do get in touch, realize there are ways to make things appear legit. If the offer appears too good to be true it likely is. If there are promises that you need no experience at all and you can lay on the beach while raking in the money, avoid this like the plague. Give yourself a cooling off period. If you have a feeling in the pit of your stomach indicating this is not a good choice for you, trust that feeling. A feeling like this is likely the best indicator. For those of us that offer legitimate opportunities, we welcome inquiries. We also will be the first to say, "Yes, you can make great money working from home, but you will have to actually work at whatever business or job you are planning on doing." Remember this , "An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure."

Author's Bio: 

Discover success insights from experts around the globe who are out there making a difference and making a great living in the process. Kathleen Gage interviews the best of the best with Power Up for Profits Podcast. http://www.powerupforprofitspodcast.com