security issue - translation agency asking for potentially sensitive information (Spain)
Thread poster: Thomas Johansson

Thomas Johansson  Identity Verified
Peru
Local time: 04:53
Member (2005)
English to Swedish
+ ...
Jun 20, 2012

I have been doing a few jobs for a Spanish translation agency, and now I have received a message from their accounts department, asking me to fill in a short form, providing some personal information, banking information, my signature and some additional documentation.

I am wondering about potential security issues here, especially since they are asking about my signature together with a copy of my ID card and a copy of bank documentation, and also my account holder address, which I feel they shouldn't need.

Should I provide them with all the information and documentation they are asking for?

Here is their explanation:

"I am contacting you because our Accounts Department was going to process your invoice for payment but they are missing some information. Our legislation regarding foreign suppliers have changed, in order to be able to process your invoices properly from now on, we kindly ask you to fill in the attached supplier registration form and return it together with the requested documentation to XXXXX at you earliest convenience."


Below is a copy of the Supplier Registration Form that I've been asked to fill in.


----SUPPLIER REGISTRATION FORM----

LEGAL NAME:

REPRESENTATIVE:

ADDRESS:

CITY:

ZIP CODE:

PROVINCE/STATE:

COUNTRY:

PHONE NUMBER:

TAX ID/VAT/VIES:

E-MAIL:

----BANK INFORMATION----

ACCOUNT HOLDER:

ACCOUNT HOLDER TAX ID/VIES/VAT:

ACCOUNT HOLDER ADDRESS:

BANK NAME:

INTERNATIONAL ACCOUNT NUMBER:

SWIFT CODE:

SIGNATURE:



MANDATORY DOCUMENTATION TO BE PROVIDED WITH THIS FORM:

NON-SPANISH RESIDENTS:
COPY OF ID CARD, TAXPAYER RESIDENCE CERTIFICATE, COPY OF BANK DOCUMENTATION CONFIRMING ACCOUNT HOLDER NAME OR PAYPAL SCREENSHOT CONFIRMING PAYPAL ACCOUNT HOLDER NAME



[Edited at 2012-06-20 19:16 GMT]

[Edited at 2012-06-20 19:17 GMT]


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Niina Lahokoski  Identity Verified
Finland
Local time: 11:53
Member (2008)
English to Finnish
+ ...
ID copy and fiscal residence quite usual requests Jun 20, 2012

I've been requested a copy of my ID a few times, and then sent a passport copy with some sensitive information (passport number, date of birth etc.) blacked out. The clients have been happy with that. I've also been asked the fiscal residence certificate to confirm I do not live and pay taxes in Spain. It is a document you ask from your local tax authorities, they send it to you and you forward it to the client.

What I find a bit odd is the last request (about proving account ownership), that one I've never come across before, and cannot see any reason why it would be any of their business. I don't think there is any law requiring you to provide any such proof.

[Edited at 2012-06-20 19:38 GMT]


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Paulo Eduardo - Pro Knowledge  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 07:53
Member (2008)
Portuguese to English
+ ...
That information is not sensitive. Jun 20, 2012

Have they asked for you passwords or PIN numbers?

So none of the information asked for is sensitive.


Direct link Reply with quote
 

neilmac  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 10:53
Spanish to English
+ ...
SOP Jun 20, 2012

Paulo Eduardo - Pro Knowledge wrote:

Have they asked for you passwords or PIN numbers?

So none of the information asked for is sensitive.


I agree. It seems like the normal standard operating procedure for making international bank transfers. However, if they are paying through Paypal, it seems very demanding - it makes me wonder just whose security they are trying to protect.

PS: AFAIK the Spanish legislation has not changed recently, but I may be mistaken. You can easily check.

[Edited at 2012-06-20 20:05 GMT]


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Nikola Traživuk  Identity Verified
Serbia
Local time: 10:53
English to Serbian
+ ...
I agree.. Jun 20, 2012

Paulo Eduardo - Pro Knowledge wrote:

Have they asked for you passwords or PIN numbers?

So none of the information asked for is sensitive.


Unless you give them passwords or PIN numbers there shouldn't be any problems. I send copies of my ID card to different people in order to confirm my identity, and my bank account in order to receive payments, and so far, everything is great. Just in case, you could check whether there were any problems with that agency earlier.


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Sheila Wilson  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 09:53
Member (2007)
English
+ ...
Bank and tax checks Jun 20, 2012

Niina Lahokoski wrote:
What I find a bit odd is the last request (about proving account ownership), that one I've never come across before, and cannot see any reason why it would be any of their business. I don't think there is any law requiring you to provide any such proof.


That one doesn't surprise me in the slightest. It seems that banks now have to find out everything about who pays money into your bank account and who receives money you pay out. I've had a lot of hassle with banks lately checking up on everything but my blood group. They're very apologetic but they say they "have to". I suppose I believe them. So I'm not surprised that a company that is going to pay money into a particular account needs to be in a position to prove that that account is owned by the person who invoiced them. It's all to do with money laundering. All us "foreigners" ("aliens" we're called in some places) do that, don't we?

Sheila


Direct link Reply with quote
 

John Fossey  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 04:53
Member (2008)
French to English
Personal info Jun 20, 2012

If you are to be paid by bank transfer it's understandable that they need banking information. If not, however, they don't need it. I don't give out bank information until it comes time to pay something by wire.

I doubt there is any legislation requiring PayPal information. It's a private company and has nothing to do with legislation. There is enough fraud conducted through PayPal that I would not give out any information other than my account email address, which they already know. It's none of their business if I own the account or not, they simply need to know that I've been paid.

ID Card? What ID card are they referring to? In many countries there is no such thing as an ID Card. I have a passport and drivers license, but if I didn't travel across borders, fly or drive (and some city dwellers do none of the above) there would be nothing requiring me to have any ID Card. There's no "Taxpayer's Residence Certificate" here either.

I would give them the information needed for the transaction but no more. The strange thing about such requests is when different suppliers from the same country have different ideas about what they are "legally" required to have.


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Andy Watkinson
Spain
Local time: 10:53
Member
Catalan to English
+ ...
"eez normal..." (shrugs shoulders....) Jun 21, 2012

Hi,

Agree with others above.

This is quite par for the course in Spain.

They adopt a scattershot approach to cover themselves by requesting every piece of paper/information known to man ---- should Hacienda require they produce evidence of "due diligence", there's no mad scramble to prove they're not Sheila's moneylaunderers.

If it's any consolation, they inflict the same treatment on everyone, Spanish or otherwise.

After thirty-four years actually living here, totally legally, VAT-registered, a homeowner with several bank accounts, social security cards, reluctant (in hindsight) taxpayer, my last car (2 years ago) had to be bought in my wife's name because I "didn't have the right papers".

[Edited at 2012-06-21 00:48 GMT]


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Woodstock  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 10:53
German to English
+ ...
In addition to low rates Jun 21, 2012

- at least with the handful of Spanish agencies I have had any contact or worked with - the red tape is another reason I don't do any business there anymore. I thought German bureaucracy was cumbersome, but the procedures involved in working with an agency in Spain win that contest hands down!

Direct link Reply with quote
 

Tomás Cano Binder, BA, CT  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 10:53
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Normal Jun 21, 2012

Unfortunately requesting this kind of information is normal. Seems that governments and banks are trying to fight money laundering and implement privacy rules to an extent that forces us to sign all sort of unusual things. For instance, I had just to sign a document stating that my ages-old supplier of office supplies is allowed to charge their invoices in my ages-old bank account. They have been doing it for over a decade, but now some law requests that they are specifically authorised by us to do so.

However, DO NOT hand out sensitive information to someone who has not ordered anything yet! It would be foolish to do so. Supply the information only to someone for whom you have been working for some time. And in the case of new customers, request advance payment of several jobs before supplying any sensitive information.


Direct link Reply with quote
 


To report site rules violations or get help, contact a site moderator:


You can also contact site staff by submitting a support request »

security issue - translation agency asking for potentially sensitive information (Spain)

Advanced search







CafeTran Espresso
You've never met a CAT tool this clever!

Translate faster & easier, using a sophisticated CAT tool built by a translator / developer. Accept jobs from clients who use SDL Trados, MemoQ, Wordfast & major CAT tools. Download and start using CafeTran Espresso -- for free

More info »
memoQ translator pro
Kilgray's memoQ is the world's fastest developing integrated localization & translation environment rendering you more productive and efficient.

With our advanced file filters, unlimited language and advanced file support, memoQ translator pro has been designed for translators and reviewers who work on their own, with other translators or in team-based translation projects.

More info »



Forums
  • All of ProZ.com
  • Term search
  • Jobs
  • Forums
  • Multiple search