terrencecodes in  
Software Engineer  

Paid Research Interviews … Scam?

Hey, fellow devs,

I've gotten a few, unsoliticed emails from various company representatives that are conducting "market research" studies. In these emails, they are asking for time (30-60 minutes) to ask questions about my experience with a given technology. In exchange, they offer an incentive, usually in the form money, to be sent as a prepaid card or other electrionic means. 

Are these emails/offers a scam?

The emails are sent securely. The business seems legit. The individual sending the shows evidence of being affiliated with the company (LinkedIn profile, Google search, etc.). In other words, to me, this does not appear to be a typical email scam (a la Nigerian prince). The email is well-written, does not ask for direct information, no links, email is sent securely, email address is not unusual. 

But, I just want to be sure.

In case folks are wondering, one email I received from a company called "Zintro."

Thanks, in advance, for your insight. 
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JackieDaytonaBackend Software Engineer  
There are legitimate companies that do what you're describing.

You're basically being asked to participate in a focus group. Compensation is usually involved, or they wouldn't be able to get participants. Since they're targeting highly paid skilled workers, I'd expect over $100 per session in direct cash payment (most likely PayPal, maybe gift cards).

Of course, there are scams that mimic that setup. I can't personally vouch for Zintro, but they have a solid TrustPilot rating and have asked for something specific with a short time commitment. Be careful with the info you share, and your worst case should be losing an hour or so of time.
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