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Banned outsourcer sending requests for private information (Moneybookers and bank accounts)
Thread poster: DocteurPC

DocteurPC  Identity Verified
Local time: 09:18
English to French
+ ...
Apr 30, 2008

I recently received this request from an agency in Cairo:

Please send me your money bookers account with your bank details !!

Since I could not remember dealing with this particular agency, and they did not appear in my clients' list, I checked on the BlueBoard... just to find out that it is a banned outsourcer! If they are banned, I can presume that they are not "good guys".

I don't know what they were planning/hoping to do with this information, but you should be suspicious of anyone who asks you for this kind of information. You probably already know that PayPal, Moneybookers, your bank and similar payment systems will NEVER ask you for your information by email.

However, I also know that many of you include your PayPal, Moneybookers or bank account information on your c.v. or even your profile.

I have told some of you already: DO NOT DO THAT!!
You can mention that you have a PayPal account, but don't volunteer more information.
When you invoice a client, you have, of course, to give them the proper account name or even some banking information, but be careful.

And make sure that your password is not easy to guess - forget your birth date or the same name as your user name. They are too easy to guess. Also, do not include your birth date in your documents, c.v. or profile.

After discussing it with a moderator, we agreed that I should warn others about it. If it stops only one of you from getting in trouble, it's worth it.

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Michelle McBride  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 14:18
Japanese to English
Thank you Apr 30, 2008

I'm sure I'm not the only one that appreciates your note. It's good to have a reminder about things like this, it's awful.


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Mónica Algazi  Identity Verified
Local time: 10:18
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
Thanks! May 1, 2008

Thanks for the warning, Georgette.

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Pradeep Mahapatra
Local time: 18:48
English to Oriya
+ ...
Thank You Very Much May 1, 2008

Thank you very much for warning & guidance. Its indeed very helpful.

Thank you once again.

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Trinh Do  Identity Verified
Member (2007)
English to Vietnamese
+ ...
Banned outsourcer sending requests for private information (Moneybookers and bank accounts) May 1, 2008

I quite agree with you. I receive a strange email asking for my PayPal/Moneybooker/bank account details from some source which I don't know. I simply deleted the email and did not response. As for passwords, etc., I made sure it would be extremely difficult to guess.

Such emails should be treated with caution, regardless where they come from.

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Local time: 15:18
Danish to English
Is there something they can do with the info? May 1, 2008

Using your bank account info with iban number is there some way they can get funds out of your account?

Just wondering if this has happened to anyone as I recently has a suspicious buyer on an auction site who wanted that info--I told him that couldn't be provided and cancelled his bid just to be on the safe side. I normally use PayPal unless its a Danish buyer, where bank transfer is safe.

[Edited at 2008-05-01 17:01]

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DocteurPC  Identity Verified
Local time: 09:18
English to French
+ ...
Yes, they can use the information to try to empty your bank account or credit card May 1, 2008

To answer Thorson:

Yes, this is what the so-called Nigeria letter is all about (you know those letters from people who say they will transfer millions of dollars left over in an account in Nigeria, or Burkina Faso, from somebody who died without heirs) - if only you will send them your banking information!

This is also what those physing letters "supposedly" from PayPal, or your bank, try to get. Since we leave a lot of info on the Net, whether we want to or not, they can match this info and get enough to be able to get to your PayPal or bank account, if you supply this information.

To scare you a bit, read this on our digital shadow and what we leave behind:

This is the reason I started this post, to stop people from being taken in.

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Charlie Bavington  Identity Verified
Local time: 14:18
French to English
Bank account info only May 1, 2008

Thorson wrote:
Using your bank account info with iban number is there some way they can get funds out of your account?

As far as I know, if everybody in the banking system does what they should do and assuming that your bank account number (in full, with sort code and bank and branch and any local variants) is ALL they have, then no.

However, not everyone does what they are supposed to do ! Primarily, of course, there are 2 ways of authorising transactions - 1) i/d plus a signature in a branch or 2) online which requires passwords and stuff.

If they get your passwords and stuff, or indeed just hack, they can do what they like, as if they were you.
If they know a branch where staff don't routinely check identity and signatures, then again, they can do anything you can.

But as I say, in theory, if we (by not making our online accounts too easy to hack and not leaving signed documents in the rubbish, say) play our part and the banks play theirs (by checking people are who they claim to be, every time), then a bank account number alone should not be enough to get your money.
Sadly, of course, all systems are fallible....

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Local time: 15:18
French to Dutch
+ ...
Regular banks and Paypal never ask for information May 2, 2008

I received this letter too, some weeks ago (with lots of grammar mistakes). And I don't have a Paypal account.

Be careful, NEVER click on the links in these e-mails because they take you to a false website.

Always verify the website of your bank; it should be of the https:// type.

Check your account(s) every day.

My bank has a double set of keywords and I don't have a creditcard on my professional account. The agency knows that I rarely ask for money transfers, and only for small amounts.

Go from time to time to your agency so that they know you and know what you are doing. Ask them to warn you if there's something strange.

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DocteurPC  Identity Verified
Local time: 09:18
English to French
+ ...
here's another agency working the same trick, but differently Jun 19, 2008

This is their message - I know it's false since I had not applied to this agency nor did I "express concern" (since they are banned, I would be stupid to do so). Simply destroy their message.

Dear Georgette,

Thank you for your email. We are aware of the current postings on the Proz website and can assure you that these issues are being looked into by our Translator Resources and Accounts team who are working with Proz site staff.

I am not able to discuss the details of the issues but can assure you that we take payment matters very seriously and that translators always receive payment for the work they complete.

Some of the issues relate to a misunderstanding of our payment terms and procedures, a copy of which I have attached for your reference.

I appreciate your concerns and can assure you that steps are taken to resolve all issues.

If you would like to continue with your application or have any questions about our procedures please feel free to contact us.

With kind regards,

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Paul Lambert  Identity Verified
Local time: 15:18
Member (2006)
Swedish to English
+ ...
IBAN numbers are fairly safe to give out, but... Jun 19, 2008

I think that it is generally safe to give out IBAN numbers and SWIFT codes (which is all any honest customer actually needs). However, if you are a bit unsure, you can tell your bank that you want your account declared "for deposit only". This way noone can walk into a bank branch and withdraw your money.

In order for you to get to your money, you can go online and use your bank's secure internet service to transfer the money from your business account to another account of yours whose account number you are not in the habit of giving out.

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