Tsunami of unsolicited freelance applications?
Thread poster: Peter Adolph

Peter Adolph
Local time: 13:58
Member (2006)
English to Danish
+ ...
Dec 25, 2013

Hi all

Not sure if this is the right forum, so apologies if it isn't ...

Have anyone else noticed that a true tsunami of freelance applications hit the mail box this morning? From about last evening till now I have received approx. 100 unsolicited applications, and it is practically speaking flooding my inbox. And they keep coming.

I fully understand that freelancers want to market themselves, but I am not sure that it is in their best interest to do so by means of unsolicited mass-applications like this. Obviously I just hit the Delete button without even reading the e-mails. But I also get annoyed because I risk overseeing important e-mails.

But does anyone know if Proz sells corporate members e-mail addresses to freelancers? Has Proz recently held an educational event for freelancers on how to market themselves? I'm just curious to find out how/who started this rather annoying flooding.

Kind regards


Teresa Borges
Local time: 12:58
Member (2007)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Yes Dec 25, 2013

but today not more than in any other day. For the last 1 or 2 months (maybe more) my email box has been flooded with unsolicited applications, mostly from people who do not translate from/into European Portuguese (I work exclusively from/into European Portuguese). Needless to say that they all go directly to the bin!


Shai Navé  Identity Verified
Local time: 14:58
English to Hebrew
+ ...
I'm not sure that they are legitimate communications Dec 25, 2013

...at least not all of them.

Lucky for me I haven't been flooded with such emails, but a colleague and a friend of mine was, and he isn't even an outsourcer in any shape or form.

When going over these emails (sampling, as it were impossible to go over each and everyone because they kept flooding in, sometimes 10 or so in an hour) I came to conclude that they are not legitimate inquires. I don't know if the names of the alleged applicants are of real translators whose identities were stolen or not, but either way many of them are from scammers/frauds. From analyzing the message headers I've noticed that a lot of them use aliases (i.e. the email address in the From field does not match the email address and server that appear in the message header), and many of these emails are phrased exactly the same, just with different language pairs.
Also, I've identified few suspicious attachments, so I would advise not to open any file that is attached to these emails.

This is probably the result of email harvesting and/or the spammed email address spammed might have found its way and ended up in one of those list of agencies that are being sold and passed around.

I suggest the following:
1) Report this to your email service provider who might be able to analyze the sources and take some corrective actions.
2) Remove all published email addresses from the web (CV file in ProZ and other websites, company brochure, Social Media, etc.).
3) Use Google to search the email address being spammed enclosed within quotes to display all instances in which it is freely visible on the web.


Natalie  Identity Verified
Local time: 13:58
Member (2002)
English to Russian
+ ...

Well known issue Dec 25, 2013

The right forum is here: http://www.proz.com/forum/946 (I am moving your thread there)

There is a number of other threads on exactly the same issue, for example:

Please make a search on "Languagemet".


Peter Adolph
Local time: 13:58
Member (2006)
English to Danish
+ ...
Thanks! Dec 25, 2013

I now see that these socalled 'applications' fit with much of the description provided by some other Proz members (the e-mails have all of them been forwarded from some other e-mail address).

I had not been the target of this kind of scam before and didn't actually realize it was scam. I was just annoyed about the huge number of unsolicited applications.

Thanks, Natalie, for enlighting me.



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