From selling products to offering virtual administrative services, more and more Americans are working out of their homes. Home-based businesses offer many opportunities that brick and mortar companies do not. Individuals with home-based businesses often require a much lower start-up cost than other types of businesses, and with the advent and proliferation of the Internet, running a home-based business has become easier, less costly, and a feasible solution for more individuals. Among the Internet based tools that are helping these business owners succeed is the Internet fax.Internet fax is a tool that allows the business owner to send a fax with nothing but a laptop and an Internet connection. Because of this, home-based businesses can compete in a larger environment by sending and receiving documents without the additional costs, hardware, and problems that having a traditional fax machine causes. To compete in a larger environment, business owners must be able to act quickly, and sending documents through the mail is anything but timely. Also, the cost of sending materials overnight can add up, especially for business owners who are just beginning to enter the competitive business world. With Internet fax, business owners can send documents immediately with a relatively low cost, especially since a variety of plans exist to meet the needs and budgets of small to medium-sized businesses. Even though a home-based business may be small, using this tool allows it to compete with large, established companies, creating a more equal environment for the best company to succeed.One of the crucial ways that having Internet fax aids businesses is through allowing even the smallest businesses to meet tight deadlines. In a world of instant communication, clients and customers want their documents faster than ever. Although public fax machines are available, they can be costly and inconvenient. However, faxing over the Internet allows home-based businesses to meet deadlines by transmitting documents immediately from anywhere with an Internet connection. With the reduction in cost of PDF editing software and scanners, which allow businesses to send documents that require signatures, Internet fax is a viable solution.Internet fax is not only a telecommunications tool for small businesses, but it also gives home-based businesses the ability to improve their professionalism. Many home-based business owners have quality ideas, education, and expertise, but one of the largest challenges is finding clients and customers. Because the typical consumer is a cautious consumer, less established companies tend to get less business. However, when businesses have the resources to effectively perform; even the home-based business can grow into a Fortune 500 company. With Internet fax, businesses can build their reputations and credibility by acting like a corporation, meeting deadlines, and communicating efficiently.Faxing over the Internet can help ensure that information like social security numbers, payment information, and other personal details are protected. Internet fax allows home-based businesses that might not be able to purchase extensive security protection to operate in a secure environment. When customers fax information into an Internet fax number, the information is stored in the business’s cache, so only authorized business owners and employees can see it. This way, business owners do not risk the loss or theft of sensitive information, allowing them to improve their image as a credible, reputable company.The technological innovations of the last ten years have revolutionized the way companies do business and have provided home-based businesses with opportunities like never before. However, because of technological innovation, customers and clients tend to expect more from businesses in terms of communication and deadlines. Internet Fax is one tool that can help smaller home-based businesses compete with larger businesses even in the midst of these higher expectations. Because this technology allows businesses to send faxes wherever an Internet connection can be found, it is a tool that is extremely suitable for home-based and mobile businesses.