Off topic: Possible phishing?
Thread poster: sivtufte

sivtufte  Identity Verified
Norway
Local time: 02:03
English to Norwegian (Bokmal)
+ ...
Nov 6, 2009

I just recieved this mail:

I am xxxxx xxxxxx xxxxxxxxxxx xxxxxxxxx, China. We hereby
have a translation job for nearly 30 languages.We know you
from ProZ.com. The total number of files is 2000-3000 words
translated from English to Norwegian. But a copy of your
passport shall be requried for this task. Please tell me the
rate and reply me with the copy as required.

Copy of my passport???
I am known to them from Proz.com - and it says I work IN NORWAY.
I am most doubtful about sending a copy of anything!

What do you think about this?

[Subject edited by staff or moderator 2009-11-16 12:35 GMT]


 

Laurent KRAULAND  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 02:03
French to German
+ ...
Recurring request Nov 6, 2009

Hi sivtufte,
this is a recurring request from one Chinese agency - they don't seem to be aware of some privacy and confidentiality issues. As far as I could make things out, they ask for a copy of your passport to be able to "document" that you are native in the language you pretend to be and/or that you actually exist as the person you pretend to be. I fail to understand the reasoning behind this request, as you can e.g. be native in Chinese and have only a British passport.
All in all, I see this request as an example of insurmountable cultural differences. As an counter-example, some French agencies ask me for my social security registration document, which is quite normal if they want to give proof to fiscal authorities that they are not working with moonlighters. But that's basically all.

Have a nice day!

[Edited at 2009-11-06 08:26 GMT]


 

Tomás Cano Binder, BA, CT  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 02:03
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Total phishing Nov 6, 2009

Mark as spam so that Proz.com can block it in the future and forget about it.

In 14 years in business, nobody has asked me for a copy of my passport. They will use it to grab money from your accounts and lure other people into dirty business. NEVER GIVE A COPY OF YOUR PASSPORT TO ANY OUTSOURCER!

And thanks a lot for posting!
Best,
Tomás


 

xxxnortranslate
Norway
Local time: 02:03
English to Norwegian
+ ...
Definitely phising Nov 6, 2009

I received the same e-mail.
And immediately all my alarm bells startet ringing!

Her are parts of my e-mails to and from "Laura":

>Dear Laura,
>I would love to do business with you, but I will never - ever - send a copy of my passport
>to you.

Laura replied:
Our client has a project involved nearly 30 languages. They mainly specialized in phone products. Thus, they need us to proofread the spell of the file, precisely by native speakers. In order to confirm that their files are proofread by native speakers, they need a copy of passport or univserity certificate. Just like this...hope you can understand...

My answer:
>I can understand that you need to verify that the translator actually is a native when
>he/she claims to be. However, the fact that you have a Norwegian passport or a university
>degree only shows that you are a registerd citizen or are/have been a student. It does not
>say anything about your Norwegian language skills.

Laura replied:
Thanks for your reply. But for our client, they still need a certificate. Thus, you may submit yout full name, ID number, phone number and address now. Now, we have a project to be proofread firstly.

My final answer:
>I will not give you a copy of my passport, ID or any sensitive data. If I do that I only do
>that to customers I have had for a long time.
>Payment via Western Union is not acceptable.
>The proofreading file you've sent me is totally useless. It is impossible to proofread
>anything without the original text. The words you sent me are a lot of random names and
>whole or parts of words. It is impossible to know how they should be spelled.

I told her to look for another translator, and did not hear from here again.
Maybe that is why she contacted you? Sorry Sivicon_smile.gif

[Edited at 2009-11-06 08:35 GMT]


 

sivtufte  Identity Verified
Norway
Local time: 02:03
English to Norwegian (Bokmal)
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks for all your answers :) Nov 6, 2009

I think I'll just deny their request and point out to them (as many others already have) that I'll never give out any copy my passport - from the obvious reasons that it may be misused.

Also I think to report them.

Thanks again, for all useful answersicon_smile.gif

Have a nice day!


 

Tomás Cano Binder, BA, CT  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 02:03
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
China Nov 6, 2009

May I add that apparently a vast majority of phishing and other troubles caused to professional translators today come from China, at least in appearance.

I say "at least in appearance" as to me it looks like every scammer is now very happy to alcim that they are in China, knowing that there is very little we Westerners can do to sue anybody in China. In fact, a big part of scammers claiming to be Chinese live in other countries, maybe next door in Oslo, Washington or Barcelona.

Indeed people claiming to be Chinese agencies are causing a lot of trouble these days, but surely there are lawful and decent Chinese agencies as well.


 

Brannigan
Italy
Local time: 02:03
Italian to English
+ ...
another thread Nov 6, 2009

There is another thread on this very topic (I read it a couple of weeks bad) which mentioned that it could be a scam regarding falsifying passports or something similar. Good to know.

 

Yasutomo Kanazawa  Identity Verified
Local time: 09:03
You're right Nov 6, 2009

Brannigan wrote:

There is another thread on this very topic (I read it a couple of weeks bad) which mentioned that it could be a scam regarding falsifying passports or something similar. Good to know.


Yes, I too remember reading a similar thread, which was also a Chinese agency asking for the topic starter's ID, and she was feeling very suspicious about it.

Here's the thread:

http://www.proz.com/forum/business_issues/148576-a_potential_provider_translation_agency_asking_for_a_copy_of_my_id_card_what_should_i_do.html



[Edited at 2009-11-06 12:55 GMT]


 

Eleni Makantani
Greece
Local time: 03:03
Member
English to Greek
+ ...
Don't bother Nov 6, 2009

It came to me too. As Laurent pointed out, it is a recurring request. Don't even bother to think about this mail. I've trained my fingers to click on "delete" instantlyicon_smile.gif

 

Kalinka Hristova  Identity Verified
Bulgaria
Local time: 03:03
Member (2007)
English to Bulgarian
+ ...

MODERATOR
Check the "agency's" name in BB Nov 7, 2009

Yasutomo Kanazawa wrote:

Yes, I too remember reading a similar thread, which was also a Chinese agency asking for the topic starter's ID, and she was feeling very suspicious about it.

Here's the thread:

http://www.proz.com/forum/business_issues/148576-a_potential_provider_translation_agency_asking_for_a_copy_of_my_id_card_what_should_i_do.html



[Edited at 2009-11-06 12:55 GMT]


This is "my" posting about the same "agency".icon_smile.gif

DO NOT send them anything and, even better, do not bother replying them. Something else, DO NOT go to their website because it is full of viruses!

Believe it or not, yesterday I had a new "job offer" from themicon_biggrin.gif

[Edited at 2009-11-07 10:03 GMT]


 

sivtufte  Identity Verified
Norway
Local time: 02:03
English to Norwegian (Bokmal)
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
The company is also listed in here Nov 7, 2009

I checked with the ratings and found them listed - they have not so good sayings about them. Hopefully we are all at alert towards these scam operators!

I DID answer their mail however, and rejected the job offer + stated why nobody ever gives out ino like this. I also referred to the fact that they have been notified about this in previous attempts - and that due to this I would report it as phishing.
They never answeredicon_smile.gif

Thanks again, to you all.
Have a great weekendicon_smile.gif


 

sivtufte  Identity Verified
Norway
Local time: 02:03
English to Norwegian (Bokmal)
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
I thought I'd just show you what they operate as. Nov 7, 2009

I'm glad I never opened any of their files!

http://www.proz.com/blueboard/18236


 

Yasutomo Kanazawa  Identity Verified
Local time: 09:03
Bit off-topic Nov 9, 2009

A bit off topic, but I was wondering why so many Chinese websites are attack sites or full of viruses.
I have a McAfee anti-virus installed on my PC, and when I google some websites in Chinese, say, with any keyword, there are 10-15 sites listed on the first page, and maybe half of them are flagged with a red "X" sign next to them alerting me that clicking those sites are not safe. Is this because Chinese websites are censored by the government, or simply malicious?


 


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