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SCAM ALERT: Freelancers and agencies, please beware of a scammer impersonating real translators
Thread poster: Lucia Leszinsky

Lucia Leszinsky
SITE STAFF
Aug 8, 2012

Hello all,

I just wanted to bring to your attention a recent form of scam in which real translators' CV information is copied and their names used with a different email address --usually in the form of {translator's_name}@{free_email_service_provider}-- to quote on jobs posted at ProZ.com as well as in other translation portals and freelancing websites. It has been noticed that, if the scammer is assigned the project for which s/he submitted a quote, the translation is either made with MT or else outsourced to real translators that are never paid for the project.

Several translation agencies also reported to have received unsolicited applications / CVs from this scammer. These applications are very similar and are also sent from an email address from a free email service provider and from Palestinian IP addresses:

Hello,

I am a highly qualified freelance translator who is committed to the highest standards in the profession. I provide a friendly, reliable and trustworthy translation and proofreading services.

{here they would copy real translators' CV information}

I will be pleased to assist you on your current assignment.

Hoping to hear from you soon.

Best regards,

{real translator's name}
{real translator's credentials}

Emails: {real translator's name.last name}@hotmail.com / {real translator's name.last name}@gmail.com


If you are a freelancer, please be very cautious when choosing to deal with job offers from new, potential clients. Before accepting a job offer, always check the outsourcer; search their name, check their website to see if they have a company domain name such as {company_name}.com, call their website phone number to make sure that the offer comes from a real outsourcer, and not from someone impersonating them, and check their Blue Board record for feedback from other service providers who have worked with them.

If you are an outsourcer, be careful with unsolicited applications. Before assigning a project to a translator, check their credentials, ask them for a scanned copy of those credentials to confirm they are real; check the WWA feedback in their ProZ.com profile to learn about other outsourcers' experience with that service provider. If you receive the application directly via your website or directly in your email inbox, try to get in touch with the translator more directly (send them a ProZ.com profile message) to confirm the application actually comes from them; and check their identity verification profile status.

Finally, make sure that you remain well-informed on new scams by subscribing to ProZ.com scam alerts and learn more about risk management and scammer who steal translations by reading this article.

And if you receive an email message as the one exemplified above through ProZ.com, do not hesitate to contact site staff through the online support system with further details so that site staff can take appropriate action.

Hope this helps!

Kind regards,

Lucia


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Vincent Zhou  Identity Verified
Local time: 14:19
English to Chinese
+ ...
Thanks Aug 8, 2012

Thank you for your reminding.

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Viviane Marx  Identity Verified
Local time: 07:19
German to Portuguese
+ ...
Thanks Aug 8, 2012

Thanks!!!

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Post removed: This post was hidden by a moderator or staff member because it was not in line with site rule
ipromate  Identity Verified
Local time: 13:19
Member (2013)
English to Vietnamese
+ ...
Thanks Aug 8, 2012

Thanks

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Timothy Wood  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 23:19
Member (2005)
German to English
+ ...
Thank you Aug 8, 2012

Thank you, Ms. Leszinsky. Would you recommend that translators remove their CVs from their Proz profiles to avoid this?

[Edited at 2012-08-08 17:36 GMT]


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Natalia Avseenko  Identity Verified
Russian Federation
Local time: 09:19
English to Russian
+ ...
scam alert Aug 8, 2012

Thanks Lucia!!!

[Редактировалось 2012-08-08 17:37 GMT]


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Post removed: This post was hidden by a moderator or staff member because it was not in line with site rule
Post removed: This post was hidden by a moderator or staff member because it was not in line with site rule

Lucia Leszinsky
SITE STAFF
TOPIC STARTER
Removing CV files would not solve it Aug 8, 2012

Timothy Wood wrote:

Thank you, Ms. Leszinsky. Would you recommend that translators remove their CVs from their Proz profiles to avoid this?

[Edited at 2012-08-08 17:36 GMT]


I would say that removing your CVs from your ProZ.com profiles or elsewhere would not stop this scammer as long as translators keep responding with a copy of their CVs to their fake offers to be added to their database.

What you can do though is to set visibility permissions for your CV files through your Profile Updater, http://www.proz.com/settings/personalization#cv , so that only ProZ.com logged-in users or members have access to them, and be very careful when it comes to providing an outsourcer with a copy of your CV.

I will let you know if I have any more details.

Lucia


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Marinus Vesseur  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 22:19
English to Dutch
+ ...
CV in PDF format are safer - free e-mail services to be avoided Aug 8, 2012

Timothy Wood wrote:

Thank you, Ms. Leszinsky. Would you recommend that translators remove their CVs from their Proz profiles to avoid this?

[Edited at 2012-08-08 17:36 GMT]


Appreciate the warning.

I've been getting hundreds of these mails in the last few weeks, so I tried to warn the colleagues whose cvs were abused. It turns out that their cvs weren't downloaded here, but the scammer first pretended to be a client with a job and requested the cv. Then they changed some data in it, added their slightly different e-mail address and sometimes changed the name (i.e. John Donson in place of Don Johnson).

It's never a good idea to offer your cv for download or even send it to a client in an editable format. Use PDFs. They are very easy to make, straight from Word.

This development further erodes the trustworthiness of free e-mail services like gmail and particularly hotmail. To appear professional it seems a good idea to pay a few bucks a year and get your own website with a proper e-mail address (such as john@translatorsareus.com) and avoid free e-mail services altogether.


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Erzsébet Czopyk  Identity Verified
Hungary
Local time: 07:19
Member (2006)
Russian to Hungarian
+ ...
thank you Aug 8, 2012

Dear Lucia, it is such a good feeling to see ProZ.com takes care of the translators and provides us so valuable help. Have a good day! Kind regards, Liza

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pooja_chic
French to English
+ ...
Thanks Aug 8, 2012

Thanks

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Nader Hassan
Qatar
Local time: 09:19
English to Arabic
+ ...
Thanks Aug 8, 2012

Thank you.
You are right, this really happens.


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Elena Pavan  Identity Verified
Local time: 07:19
Member (2005)
French to Italian
+ ...
Thank you! Aug 8, 2012

Thank you very much for the information!!

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