20 Illegal Side Hustles (You Must Beware!)

When looking for successful ways to make quick cash, it is inevitable that you will encounter illegal side hustles. This is especially true in the wake of the 2008 economic crash as well as the health pandemic affecting many people’s day to day life, including their jobs and how they make money.

As a large portion of jobs become unworkable and a large number of businesses are forced to close amid current events, and the economy continues to be unstable due to these unpredictable and unprecedented times, most people have acquired a side hustle or two for extra cash.

In fact, “side hustle” is basically just another term for a second job. If you want to dip your toe into those waters but do not know where to start, look no further!

We have the top illegal side hustles and quick cash crimes listed out which we don’t want you to take up at any cost! It should be noted that most of these illegal get rich quick schemes are prone to high risk, so keep that in mind. You usually stand to lose as much as you stand to gain. 

In fact, there are easy jobs for everyone regardless of whether you are a kid, single-mom, or a retiree.

And while we do not condone illegal activities, there can be numerous benefits to understanding the real ways people make money illegally whether it be for personal research or your own protection.

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How to Make a Million Dollars Instantly?

How to Make a Million Dollars Instantly?

As you can probably guess, it is not easy to make millions of dollars instantly. High netting schemes are usually the ones that stand to cause you the most harm if done wrong. Stealing a $1 candy bar is less likely to get you jail time than stealing $10,000 from a company.

There are ways to do make huge sums of money but the risk is almost certainly higher the more money you are able to make. That being said, there are some dirty ways to make money and a lot of it.

1. Illegal counterfeit goods

Counterfeiting is currently the largest criminal enterprise in the world coming in as a $1.7 trillion industry.

The items most often counterfeited are, in descending order, footwear, clothing, leather goods, electrical equipment, watches, medical equipment, perfumes and cosmetics, toys, jewelry, and pharmaceuticals. The brands that are counterfeited most often include Rayban, Rolex, Supreme, Louis Vitton, and Nike.

Outside of fashion, rip off electronics, toys, cigarettes, and most dangerously pharmaceutical drugs are big objects of counterfeiting as well. The majority of pill overdoses can usually be traced back to counterfeit opioids.

2. Embezzlement

Legally speaking, to embezzle money you must be entrusted with the funds you are stealing. If not, it is just theft. Whether you are a treasurer for a volunteer group, running the payroll for a large corporation, or work as a cashier, the opportunities to embezzle are endless, if you are willing to break that trust.

While funneling money in small increments that add up over time as a member of the billing department is a high-risk activity that could lead to your company suing, selling high priced office supplies as printer toner will likely only get you fired.

However, embezzlement is not that uncommon. It accounts for almost 2%, or $50 billion, of all retail sales and it called “shrinkage” in the retail industry. Gift cards are the number one target for this shrinkage.

3. Sell drugs

At the height of selling drugs is Pablo Escobar, who made $22 billion a year selling cocaine. On a more manageable scale, the average part-time street sellers of marijuana make around $600 a week or $1200 a month.

4. Online daily fantasy sports

Sports betting is a $3 trillion dollar industry that many people have gotten rich from hosting their own online daily fantasy sports.

Without betting, hosting is legal. But without betting, there is no money!

Today, offshore sportsbooks have taken over so it is definitely harder to make it big but it is always possible.

5. Hacking

Hacking is a very versatile profession that spans a large variety of digital activities. Many of these activities are both illegal and large money makers. We will break down the different ways to make money while hacking!

How Do Hackers Make Money Illegally?

Hacking is a very versatile activity. There are thousands of ways to make money digitally, but they require a knowledge of digital software and hardware. If you have a background in computer science or consider yourself a tech wiz, then hacking may be a great money-making opportunity for you. There are legal and illegal forms, as well as many, many different sneaky ways to make money.

1. White Hat Hacking versus Black Hat Hacking

Whitehat hacking is ethical hacking!

Whitehat hackers do things like penetration testing, testing in-place security systems, and performing vulnerability assessments for companies.

Blackhat hackers are where things become illegal and more morally questionable.

Blackhat hacking includes writing malware, breaking into computer networks, and bypassing security protocols.

In the middle, there are also grey hat hackers. A common tactic of grey hat hackers is to find a vulnerability in a company’s security software, and then ask for money in order to tell them what it is and fix it.

2. Spamming and spambots

Desperate companies look to hire people to send out mass emails in a last-ditch attempt at advertising.

The typical pricing is $100 for around 500,000 emails.

Some spambots are instead used to build databases of email addresses for future spam as well. Here’s how spammers make a lot of money!

3. Ransomware

This involves hackers use malware to get money from victims. Victim’s files are encrypted and in order to get their data back, they have to pay a ransom. The targets are usually large companies and small businesses.

4. Bitcoin Fraud Online

I’ve seen many people complaining about them being crypto scammed on Twitter and Facebook!

Recently, I saw a Facebook post of a woman who transferred $8,000, equivalent to 1 bitcoin, to join an MLM company (which is actually fake) believing they would offer her a home-based job. 

A few months ago, I myself came across an instance on Twitter about joining a popular stock optioneering program. The scammer created a fake Twitter account in the name of the actual guru, who many trust and revere.

Assuming it to be real, I blindly followed this fake account on Twitter. To my surprise, I instantly received a message to avail of a limited-time offer on their coaching program. It didn’t stop there. I constantly received messages wherein I was asked to transfer money in Bitcoin to join that coaching program. That’s when things got ugly! I realized that something is fishy and immediately unfollowed and reported the account. 

So, be careful with such scammers guys. They are real and are on the rise! While there are many ways scammers seek to take advantage of Netizens, here are 5 Bitcoin Scams you must never get involved with!

How to Get Free Money Illegally?

Though you may not know it, there are a wide variety of quick cash crimes. These vary widely in the amount of money they can make you and how harsh the repercussions are if you are unsuccessful. But, before I proceed any further, let me tell you, there are many ways to make over $2000 in free money (legally) or an extra clever $80 legally. If you need $500 instantly, that’s doable too! So think twice!!

1. Scam and Fraud

  1. Bogus Car Listing: If you live in a city with tons of advertisement wrapped cars, you can add fake work opportunities amid the legitimate ones to make your scam seem real.
  2. Catfishing: This is where you use online dating to trick someone into thinking your someone you are not. The goal is to make them enamored enough with you to send you money, often saying it is for a ticket to visit them.
  3. Fake Check Scams: This is where you offer to pay someone in the classifieds or on craigslist by a false check that they presume is real and ask them to wire some of the money back.
  4. Pyramid schemes: Also known as multilevel marketing, this is where you recruit people to join a pay to participate program and make money off of the new members while they likely lose money.
  5. Work at Home Schemes: This is where you place an ad that offers lots of money working in the ease and comfort of your own home. Tell people they must pay a sign-on fee to apply. By the way, if you are interested in remote jobs yourself, here is over 85 of the best!
  6. Ponzi Schemes: This classic scheme is where you promise large returns to investors for your idea and instead of earning those returns, you pay out profits from new investors. This originator of this scheme, Charles Ponzi was earning about $3 million a day at the peak of his scheme.

2. Rob a bank

The average price yielded by bank robberies was only $7,500 in 2010 and by 2020, that yield is down to $4,330. The average commercial robbery nets $1,589.

If you are ballsy, there is a fantastic illegal side hustle from Reddit about how to easily rob a bank. One user reported that he would walk into banks and hand the teller a paper note that just said “give me all your $50s and $100s.” The tellers complied because large bank robberies that go south cost lots of more money than just handing over some cash.

3. Counting Cards

Counting cards is not technically illegal as long as no external device or person is used, but it is heavily frowned upon. Still, counting cards can make you a hefty profit.

By counting cards, you can decrease the house advantage and profit by 1.5% on every hand. This allows you to average $75 per hour.

4. Grow Drugs

You can grow poppies or coca for profit, but those are very likely to get you caught. Cannabis, however, is barely even a drug. It is legal in many states recreationally and many more still for medicinal purposes. Still, growing it for distribution is still considered an illicit trade.

5. Smuggle Drugs

Another dirty way to make money is by acting as a drug mule to sneak drugs over the border.

6. Burgling homes and stores

Only 13% of 2.5 million burglaries a year get solved. After a burglary, you can sell items on eBay, Craigslist, and selling apps like OfferUp. Cell phones are perhaps the easiest item to sell for a large profit. A legal take on this money-making method is flipping thrift shop and flea market buys for cash.

7. Pimping

This is the peak of unethical ways to make money, but the average pimp makes between $5,000 to $32,000 a week through advertising services, physical protection, medical expenses, transport, and locations.

On average, pimps manage 5 prostitutes at a time. That being said, pimping almost always has an element of physical and psychological abuse to manage employees.

Sex workers can go for $20 to $300 to $5,500 an hour. Most of them typically earn less than $20,000 a year, but they also usually work less than 10 hours a week. If you work hard, you could be making $50,000 a year. Besides, for just sexting, you can make an easy $500 a week!

8. Credit card skimming

In America, wait staff takes credit and debit cards away from the table when it is time to pay the bill.

With a skimming machine (which is easy to make if you do not want to buy one on the dark web), this is one of the easiest illegal side hustles.

9. Resell e-books

Selling pirated books like e-textbooks for college, fitness books, finance books, and more has become one of the best illegal side hustles.

All you have to do is search the name of a specific book with “e-book” or “free download” and simply download it. After that, you can list them on Amazon or eBay for less than what they typically sell for.

While this is illegal, the worst that happens is your listing gets removed. With that small a risk, you can make an additional $1,800 a year.

10. Credit Card Fraud

The easiest way to begin committing credit card fraud is by buying a credit card skimmer on the dark web and attaching it to an ATM or vending machine. Once someone inserts their card, their info will be saved by the skimmer.

11. Identity Fraud and the Dark Web

Hackers and scammers can steal personal information for a variety of reasons. After stealing funds from the stolen identity’s bank account, they can sell the identity to the dark web.

There you go! I’ve listed some of the unique and creative illegal side hustle ideas that are happening right now in this modern era! Once again, I’d suggest you be aware and never get involved with any such activities, they are both highly rewarding and risky!