MILWAUKEE -- Those looking for a job know it's stressful, and some may say they'd be willing to do anything to find work. But how far is too far? FOX6's Contact 6 headed out on an undercover job search to highlight what job seekers should watch out for!
After months without a pay check, people can get emotional and scared. Debra is one such job seeker -- just looking for work to help pay the bills and care for her child.
"It's sucks. I don't have the income. It's a struggle to get rent -- to eat," Debra said.
With the nation's economy still struggling, millions are out of work. Adding to the issues job seekers face are those looking to take advantage of those desperate for work – trolling for those who will give up too much information to get a job.
Debra didn’t fall for it.
"It wants my credit information. You don't even know me and you haven't given me the interview," Debra said.
Contact 6’s job search turned up the same dangers. Contact 6's email inbox was packed with promises and pitfalls -- some asking for financial information. Others asked to click on a link or go to a webinar.
Though they may seem tempting, when it comes to work-from-home offers that may even cost money, officials say job seekers beware!
"BBB wants to look at some of those advertising and challenge the fact that these testimonials are too good to be true," Ran Hoth with the Better Business Bureau of Wisconsin said.
Contact 6 went undercover and met with a representative from Shop.com.
"This is a million-dollar website. It costs you 20 bucks a month to keep it up and running," the representative told Contact 6.
The representative told Contact 6 that for $1,400 dollars Contact 6 could buy into a multi-level website and make money every time someone buys through the site. And he dangled big dollars!
Contact 6 producer: "Are you making six figures off of this web site?"
Rep: "Not yet, but I'm getting close."
CLICK HERE to read the entire Market America statement
Meantime, Rebecca Rowling came to Contact 6 just to get paid. She says she worked two weeks at Clean Environments on Lincoln Avenue and then didn't get the $400 dollars they promised her -- the same amount they promised to Contact 6 via hidden camera.
Manager: “We provide a $400 draw every two weeks versus your commission. We pay you $20 per estimate that you set."
Clean Environment is run by Tim Ebert. He’s linked to 16 complaints with the Department of Workforce Development for issues like Rebecca`s - employees saying they worked and also didn't get paid what they expected. He owes the Department of Revenue $344,349.78.
"To me, those guys are criminals," Rowling said.
Although Clean Environment said no camera, Contact 6 went in with Rebecca to get her check. The manager refused to pay her the full amount, claiming she didn't work 62 hours. But he didn't have the time sheets to prove it. She walked out with about $200.
“Even though this wasn't the full amount, it is still something. It will still help me and my daughter and I'm still very grateful for you guys. What could I have done without your help," Rowling said.
Contact 6 says job seekers should remember to never pay money to get money, or to get a job. There is not an application fee and job seekers shouldn't provide financial information to a potential employer.
Contact 6 says if a job offer seems wrong, or too good to be true, job seekers should follow their gut and get out.