When asked to fill in the form for an agency- how much is safe to share?
Thread poster: Diana Kaplan

Diana Kaplan  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 08:45
Member (2019)
English to German
+ ...
Feb 4

Dear all,

Let´s say an agency is requesting your details in order to send you work (potentially)...how much is safe to share?
I received a form from an indian company and they seem legit but they ask date of birth and account details and ID number and paypal... I mean how do I know they won´t use my details for something else? Why sharing account details in advance? Is it odd to decline?

TIA!

Diana


Fatine777
 

neilmac  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 08:45
Spanish to English
+ ...
Define "safe" Feb 4

India? Not with my bargepole, no matter how "legit" they may seem on the surface. In my jaded worldview, it's simply too far away to send the boys round if they were to stiff me for payment.

Teresa Borges
Angus Stewart
IanDhu
 

Kay Denney  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 08:45
Member (2018)
French to English
. Feb 4

First off, have you already checked that their rates are OK? If you live in Europe you might not be able to afford to work for an Indian agency. Most of their clients will have chosen them because they charge rock-bottom rates.

Other than that, no I wouldn't share that information. They may need reassuring that you are a real person, you can supply documentation to prove that you are legally registered as a translator in your country of residence. Your date of birth or ID number is
... See more
First off, have you already checked that their rates are OK? If you live in Europe you might not be able to afford to work for an Indian agency. Most of their clients will have chosen them because they charge rock-bottom rates.

Other than that, no I wouldn't share that information. They may need reassuring that you are a real person, you can supply documentation to prove that you are legally registered as a translator in your country of residence. Your date of birth or ID number is none of their business. And I prefer to wait until I'm actually billing a client to give them details of my bank account.
Collapse


Christine Andersen
Vera Schoen
Teresa Borges
ahartje
Mina Chen
Jane F
Sandra & Kenneth Grossman
 

Diana Kaplan  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 08:45
Member (2019)
English to German
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
I thought so... Feb 4

Thank you

 

Christine Andersen  Identity Verified
Denmark
Local time: 08:45
Member (2003)
Danish to English
+ ...
You are not employed... Feb 4

I look at it this way: how much do you actually need to know about people you work and trade with?
The employees at your bank, your doctor, your car mechanic if you have a car?

Your relationship with an agency, wherever it may be in the world, is business. You provide a service, and you have to give them enough details to be able to send you the job and pay you.
In Europe a VAT number (VIES) and pay-in details for your bank account should be enough. They probabl
... See more
I look at it this way: how much do you actually need to know about people you work and trade with?
The employees at your bank, your doctor, your car mechanic if you have a car?

Your relationship with an agency, wherever it may be in the world, is business. You provide a service, and you have to give them enough details to be able to send you the job and pay you.
In Europe a VAT number (VIES) and pay-in details for your bank account should be enough. They probably need a physical address, but mine can be checked from my VAT number in the Danish business register, and I assume it works more or less like that in most countries.

You also have to convince clients one way or another that you can provide what they want at least as well as the next translator in the directory, so you will have to show some qualifications and have a sales pitch, but they do not need your age and personal details.

Clients sometimes try to act as if they were employing freelancers - they are not. They do not need to know details to pay your tax or for pension schemes, holiday funds and whatever, because they do not do it.
Where you are dealing with a new client, no matter how legit they are, never give them more information than they need for the immediate job in hand. You may never hear of them again!

The next step is an NDA … but there is already lots of advice elsewhere that you can check out.
Collapse


Teresa Borges
ahartje
Diana Kaplan
Sheila Wilson
Mina Chen
Wout Van den Broeck
Michele Fauble
 

Sheila Wilson  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 07:45
Member (2007)
English
+ ...
TBA Feb 4

I find "TBA" (to be advised) comes in very handy on applications forms. I use it for my bank details, for example, and for my address too if I'm feeling cagey.

When you say "ID number", I wonder what it is they're asking for. If it's your personal identification, such as your driving licence or passport number, I'd simply refuse. They have no need of that information and no right to it. On the other hand, they may have the right to know that you're fulfilling your own country's req
... See more
I find "TBA" (to be advised) comes in very handy on applications forms. I use it for my bank details, for example, and for my address too if I'm feeling cagey.

When you say "ID number", I wonder what it is they're asking for. If it's your personal identification, such as your driving licence or passport number, I'd simply refuse. They have no need of that information and no right to it. On the other hand, they may have the right to know that you're fulfilling your own country's requirements re tax and contributions on professional income. The need varies and your response needs to vary. Some countries (e.g. Spain) will provide a free certificate in just moments that simply gives your status as a freelancer, while others won't. But nothing is needed until you're presented with the first job, that's for sure.
Collapse


Mina Chen
Tina Vonhof
DIANNE BEREST
 

Miroslav Novak
Local time: 08:45
Polish to English
+ ...
How much do you fancy selling away your data? Feb 5

The agency does not need to know anything about you.

Their only part of the game is to have the translation finished on time and with the expected quality.
Who does it, how old they are, what schools they graduated from, what software they use, or whatever else, is just blatantly irrelevant.

If you like filling up multi-page resumes, online forms, questionnaires, and you do it for your own fun, just do it.

But if you expect that providing (any) data w
... See more
The agency does not need to know anything about you.

Their only part of the game is to have the translation finished on time and with the expected quality.
Who does it, how old they are, what schools they graduated from, what software they use, or whatever else, is just blatantly irrelevant.

If you like filling up multi-page resumes, online forms, questionnaires, and you do it for your own fun, just do it.

But if you expect that providing (any) data will push you up to the top of the waiting list, think again.

If the agency is ’professional’, they are probably in the market long enough to have their own trusted translators in cooperation. Which means they don’t need you for major work. Most probably, they don’t need you for less important work. They will try to contact you only when their trusted, less trusted, and fairly unknown translators who used to work for them before are all unavailable (sort of ‘Final destination’ case) or, which is more probable, the potential order has such low profit margin that no reasonable translator would take it.

On the other hand, if the agency is not professional, which means they do not have a regular translator base for cooperation, you may need a customised approach. It may be a gem, or it may be a hide and seek game. Only time will tell.

On a more personal note, if I decide to respond to an agency, I request a sample of their text. If they like my translation, we may proceed further. Before that point in time, providing any data is out of question.


[Edited at 2020-02-05 10:38 GMT]
Collapse


Sunjin Gu
Georgi Kovachev
conejo
 

Sunjin Gu  Identity Verified
South Korea
Local time: 15:45
Member
English to Korean
_ Feb 11

There are certainly good Indian companies, but giving and receiving IDs can be dangerous.

 

conejo  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 01:45
Member (2003)
Japanese to English
+ ...
Don't tell too much personal information Mar 7

They don't ever need to know your date of birth. Even if you work for them for 20 years there is no need for them to know that.

If the payment method is bank transfer, then they would need to know your bank account details to process payment, but it's important to never give that until you are issuing an invoice for a job you already completed. If there is no direct and specific need to have that information, don't give it.

The same goes for ID numbers like the Social S
... See more
They don't ever need to know your date of birth. Even if you work for them for 20 years there is no need for them to know that.

If the payment method is bank transfer, then they would need to know your bank account details to process payment, but it's important to never give that until you are issuing an invoice for a job you already completed. If there is no direct and specific need to have that information, don't give it.

The same goes for ID numbers like the Social Security number (in the US). Don't give those numbers out unless you have reached the legal requirement for giving it out. For example, if you are a US citizen living in the US, if you have worked for a company in the US and got paid $600 or more in one year, then you have to give the company your Social Security number for tax reasons. But until that time, you don't have to do it. Decline until there is a legal requirement, for personal information like that.

[Edited at 2020-03-07 04:55 GMT]
Collapse


 

Diana Kaplan  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 08:45
Member (2019)
English to German
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thank you, Conejo! Mar 9

You´re right. As a beginner I was happy to give the agencies whatever they asked for. But there must be boundaries (i.e. I may decline giving out information if there is no purpose for it yet).

 


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


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

When asked to fill in the form for an agency- how much is safe to share?

Advanced search







Wordfast Pro
Translation Memory Software for Any Platform

Exclusive discount for ProZ.com users! Save over 13% when purchasing Wordfast Pro through ProZ.com. Wordfast is the world's #1 provider of platform-independent Translation Memory software. Consistently ranked the most user-friendly and highest value

More info »
PerfectIt consistency checker
Faster Checking, Greater Accuracy

PerfectIt helps deliver error-free documents. It improves consistency, ensures quality and helps to enforce style guides. It’s a powerful tool for pro users, and comes with the assurance of a 30-day money back guarantee.

More info »



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