Paid Surveys Scams

As with any industry, in the online market research world there are unscrupulous people who promote themselves as paid survey companies and want nothing more than to take money from unsuspecting victims. Protect yourself by looking out for certain clues that paid survey scam artists tend to use on their websites as detailed below.

Big Promises

Despite the fantastic claims one can see on many survey websites, there are no companies that will pay hundreds of dollars to anyone for completing their surveys. Market researchers need opinions from a variety of consumers so the likelihood of one individual receiving every survey a company has available is highly unlikely. For instance, one survey may target someone who is married, while the next is for singles only. So while it’s possible to get a fairly steady number of survey invitations (especially when signed up for more than one panel), there is a low likelihood that any panelist is going to be working 8 hours a day taking surveys.

Large financial reward promises is a big warning light to look out for. Typically completed online surveys are worth a few dollars at most, so while taking surveys for cash can earn some extra spending money it is not a ticket to becoming a millionaire.

Personal Information

Legitimate survey companies will ask for basic information upon registration, such as name, age, address and occupation. This helps them categorize each panelist so they can determine which surveys are send to each respondent.

If a company asks for credit card information…watch out! Read through the rewards/payment section of the survey company’s website to see how respondents are typically rewarded. Most common these days is payment via PayPal, which means the company needs an email address and that’s all. Providing your SIN number, bank account information, driver’s licence number, etc. are all completely unnecessary and should raise warning flags.

Paid survey scam companies may also take information gathered from new panelists and sell it to third parties. Honest and legitimate survey companies follow strict guidelines and online safety protocols to ensure your personal information never gets sold or compromised in transit. They will state all of this in their privacy policies on their websites and usually show credentials such as affiliations with big market research industry organizations and the Better Business Bureau logo.

Scam Website Clues

Some obvious clues that the website is a paid survey scam site are poor grammar, incorrectly spelled words or unprofessional wording. Also, information about the company (such as a contact address) will most likely be missing.

Outrageous rewards such as a free vacation for signing up or large cash rewards for filling out multiple offers also point to a survey site that may not be trustworthy. Most of these sites can be spotted using common sense and avoiding offers that sound too good to be true.

How to Take Surveys Without Being Scammed

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