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Serious offer or scam? (Job mail through profile)
Thread poster: Margreet Logmans
Margreet Logmans  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 10:10
English to Dutch
+ ...
Nov 1, 2007

Hi,

today I received this message via email (I've deleted the actual name and IP address, but changed nothing else):

-----------
You have been sent a message via your ProZ.com page.
Author: Mr m*** W*** [NOTE: The author is not a registered ProZ.com user or was not logged in when sending this message.]
-----------

Hello,
I writing this short and brief mail to you because i
have a job that i will like your assistance.You have to
translate Dutch language to English language.The total
number of the work is 76,000words and i will like to know
your requirements and also the method of payment because my
method of payment is cheque.
The dealine of the work will be ending of january.I hope
that you will reply to my mail soon.
Thank you for your maximum co-operation.Waiting to hear
from you.
Regards,
Mr m*** w***


-----------
Your profile: http://www.proz.com/profile/590406
Login at: http://www.proz.com/profile/
Edit your profile mail preferences: http://proz.com/?sp=ef&show_mode=profmail
Block profile messages from this sender: http://proz.com/?sp=ef&add_ip_block****
Unsolicited advertising? Submit a support ticket: http://proz.com/support
-----------

It was sent from a Yahoo mail address.

I don't feel comfortable about this and would like to hear some opinions...

Any input much appreciated!

Margreet


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avsie  Identity Verified
Local time: 10:10
English to French
+ ...
Almost certain it's a scam Nov 1, 2007

Looks like a classic 419-type of scam. I'd stay away as far as possible from this one!

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Erik Hansson  Identity Verified
Germany
Member (2002)
Swedish
+ ...
One of those enquiries not worth a reply Nov 1, 2007

Hi Margreet,

I can't judge if this is a scam or not, but only the fact that the enquiry doesn't contain any further information about this fellow, his company, communication data etc. is enough for me to decide that this should be deleted right away without any reply.

Remember that they want something from you and therefore should give us some more information about themselves. After all, he/she has been on your profile and already knows quite a lot about you and your work. What do you know about them? Just a little more than nothing.

Regards
Erik


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Karin Usher
Local time: 09:10
Member (2006)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Scam it is!! Nov 1, 2007

Hi Margreet!

I received a few weeks ago an almost identical email. The only bit that was different is the language pair, which was Portuguese into English.

I am sure this is some type of scam.

I did not send a reply.

[Edited at 2007-11-01 12:39]


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Pieter Botjes
United Kingdom
Local time: 09:10
English to Dutch
Scam spam Nov 1, 2007

Those offers look to me like spam from (mostly) African countries, offering millions of dollars if partaking in a 'lucrative' business opportunity. I would accept those offers (...) only if they want to pay 25% in advance, and then, after translating 25% of their text, ask again for an advance...
Anyway, this week I got a similar request.
Just make sure you know where it's coming from (business address, phone/fax, etc).

Regards.


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Sarah Magee  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 09:10
Spanish to English
+ ...
I had an email almost exactly the same Nov 1, 2007

Hi Margaret,

I had an email, through Proz but not a user, from a different address (judging by the initials you gave), also yahoo, and which was almost identical: large number of words, wanting to pay by cheque, and some of the exact same phrases in not-great English, like "I will like to know your requirements". I am positive it is the same person.

I thought it sounded suspicious so I consulted a few friends in the business and they thought so too. I also put the IP address into google, and all the hits said something about that IP having activity consistent with spam harvesting.

I sent back an email asking for more details, because I decided that if it was on the level that would become apparent as we corresponded. I never got a reply, and I'm glad because I'm 99% sure it was a scam.

You are right to be suspicious. Good luck!


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Sarah Magee  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 09:10
Spanish to English
+ ...
following on from my post above... Nov 1, 2007

Having read the replies to the original posting, I was just wondering what a 419-type scam is? Are there any websites about how to recognise types of scams?

Thanks,

Sarah Magee


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Igor Indruch  Identity Verified
Czech Republic
Local time: 10:10
English to Czech
I would try it.... Nov 1, 2007

but require some payments in advance and then suggest to devide the project to several parts and with payment after finishing every part... if it is scam, he/she will probably never reply...

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Steffen Walter  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 10:10
Member (2002)
English to German
+ ...
http://www.419eater.com Nov 1, 2007

Sarah Magee wrote:
Having read the replies to the original posting, I was just wondering what a 419-type scam is? Are there any websites about how to recognise types of scams?


Simple, Sarah - visit http://www.419eater.com (which seems to be the most famous of these sites).

Steffen


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Yolanda Broad  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 04:10
Member (2000)
French to English
+ ...

MODERATOR
Telltale sign of scam: "...because my method of payment is cheque." Nov 1, 2007

The insistence on the method of payment in the initial contact is a dead giveaway: this is someone who not only intends to "pay" you in advance, but, in fact, will "overpay" you and then ask you to write them a check/cheque for the difference.

When you receive this type of message, please don't reply. And, when it comes to you via ProZ.com, please contact Site staff (via a support request) or one of the Jobs moderators right away. With the IP information, the Site can track down the spammer/scammer and block access to the Site, at least immediately. We can't keep these people from coming back later with IDs, but the faster and more often they get blocked, the more we can discourage them from using the Site for their activities.

Yolanda Broad
ProZ.com Jobs Moderator


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Astrid Elke Witte  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 10:10
Member (2002)
German to English
+ ...
The word count looks like a scam Nov 1, 2007

It would be normal to do only a relatively small document at first for a new client - certainly not 76,000 words, anyhow!

Astrid


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Luisa Ramos, CT  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 04:10
Member (2004)
English to Spanish
Don't even reply Nov 1, 2007

Replying to that type of message will only confirm to the sender that they have hit a valid email address. The scam is only one of their objectives. If you fall for it, fine and dandy for them; if you do not, but reply, your email address will propagate and you will soon find yourself flooded with SPAM emails from many different sources.

We do not need to stick our noses down a manhole to confirm what stinks downthere, we already know. Same thing here. If the message "smells" funny, do not reply. By the way, the one you received does not "smell" funny, it stinks.


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ICL  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 10:10
English to Spanish
+ ...
Article from Ralf Lemster Nov 1, 2007

Hi Margreet,

I don't know if you have ever read the following Proz.com article,

http://www.proz.com/translation-articles/articles/84/ ,

written by Ralf Lemster, but I find it very useful in general as a double-checking procedure if you ever have doubts about an initial email from a potential work provider.

Best,

Ivette


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Margreet Logmans  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 10:10
English to Dutch
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks! Nov 1, 2007

Thank you all for your comments and insights.

I've sent a message to ProZ.com support and will let you all know what they have to say about it.

In the meantime, I've read the article by Ralf Lemster. It could do with a little more words! But basically, it is a good listing of checks and safeties.

I did check this guy with Google, but found only two hits, including one on a site of a more or less, em... adult nature. Not impressive, is it?

Needless to say, I'm not going to reply to this job offer.

Thanks again!
Margreet


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Henry Hinds  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 02:10
English to Spanish
+ ...
Proz doesn't think so Nov 1, 2007

I also got one yesterday so similar it may well have been from the same source.

I turned it in to Proz and got a reply that they didn't think it was a scam, it looked like a possible client who maybe did not properly identify himself.

Perhaps Proz should start better defining what the earmarks of a scam message are, this one had them all!


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