Does this sound like another scam?
Thread poster: Thomas Shou

Thomas Shou  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 21:37
Member (2006)
Chinese to English
+ ...
Aug 15, 2014

Dear All,
Has anyone gotten this email from "Terry"?
He's even willing to pay $4K full upfront...how should I reply to see if he's legit?
Ask him to pay full amt via paypal?
Pls advise,
Thx,
Thomas


From: G. Terry [mailto:contact@mrterryg.com]
Sent: Monday, August 11, 2014 9:34 PM
To: xuhongd@gmail.com
Subject: English into Chinese Translation job.
Importance: Hig
... See more
Dear All,
Has anyone gotten this email from "Terry"?
He's even willing to pay $4K full upfront...how should I reply to see if he's legit?
Ask him to pay full amt via paypal?
Pls advise,
Thx,
Thomas


From: G. Terry [mailto:contact@mrterryg.com]
Sent: Monday, August 11, 2014 9:34 PM
To: xuhongd@gmail.com
Subject: English into Chinese Translation job.
Importance: High


My name is Terry, i got your details on atanet (American Translators Association), i need your translation service as i have an article to translate from English into Chinese
Let me know if you're currently available upon your response i would give you all details on the job.
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Thomas T. Frost  Identity Verified
Member (2014)
Danish to English
+ ...
If it sounds too good to be true, it usually is Aug 15, 2014

Did he say which company he represents? It would be highly unusual for an individual to pay that sort of money for translating an article. Why didn't he write from a company e-mail address?

How did he intend to pay up front? Credit card? What I expect is that a few days after you receive payment, he will cancel the job with some silly excuse, then ask for a refund via Western Union or something similar. A week later, you may then be contacted by your credit card company to be inform
... See more
Did he say which company he represents? It would be highly unusual for an individual to pay that sort of money for translating an article. Why didn't he write from a company e-mail address?

How did he intend to pay up front? Credit card? What I expect is that a few days after you receive payment, he will cancel the job with some silly excuse, then ask for a refund via Western Union or something similar. A week later, you may then be contacted by your credit card company to be informed about a chargeback. A chargeback means the money is charged back to the original account and taken from you, together with a chargeback fee. That would happen if the credit card number was stolen. Fraud detection doesn't catch all fraudulent transactions, and in the case of Paypal, you are not protected against fraud when selling services. In this scenario, you end up having given him $4000, as the money sent by Western Union cannot be recovered, and you cannot identify the recipient. Chargeback fraud happened to me once, just not in relation to a refund by Western Union but by paying a subcontractor for a service that was delivered, then losing the Paypal payment.

Fraud attempts often avoid going into detail.

I would not go ahead with this without further verification of the buyer's identify.
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João Roque Dias
Portugal
Local time: 05:37
English to Portuguese
Sounds and stinks like a scam Aug 15, 2014

Copy the email header and paste it into this excellent analyzer:

http://www.cyberforensics.in/OnlineEmailTracer/index.aspx

It may give you some info about the origin of the email.


 

Thomas Shou  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 21:37
Member (2006)
Chinese to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks so much, was a scam from Nigeria! Aug 15, 2014

João Roque Dias wrote:

Copy the email header and paste it into this excellent analyzer:

http://www.cyberforensics.in/OnlineEmailTracer/index.aspx

It may give you some info about the origin of the email.


Gracias Joao for this powerful scam discovery tool!
Here is the info I found out from Nigerian Scamer:

The mail appears to be originated from the computer with IP address 41.58.16.252
The contact information of the ISP for the above IP address is,
NOC@SWIFTNG.COM
+2348077265085
GABRIEL OYEYEMI Swift Networks Ltd. 31B Saka Tinubu Street, Victoria Island, Lagos. Nigeria.
NIGERIA
The sender's email address is contact@mrterryg.com
The message-id of the the mail is .

Can you collect this info for your site to BUST this scammer for the future?!

Pls send me more info/CV about your Portuguese translation services too!

Thx,
Thomas


 

João Roque Dias
Portugal
Local time: 05:37
English to Portuguese
You're welcome, Thomas Aug 15, 2014

A few comments about analyzing email headers:

1. Geolocation for emails sent by Gmail or Hotmail SMTPs (email sending servers) is not possible, and it always trace the messages back to the original email routers in the USA.

2. In this case, the email domain -- mrterryg.com -- was created on 19 JUL 2014, and the registration data (owner, contacts, etc.) is private... Possibly, it is just a domain created to send spam mail. There is no website active at this URL.
... See more
A few comments about analyzing email headers:

1. Geolocation for emails sent by Gmail or Hotmail SMTPs (email sending servers) is not possible, and it always trace the messages back to the original email routers in the USA.

2. In this case, the email domain -- mrterryg.com -- was created on 19 JUL 2014, and the registration data (owner, contacts, etc.) is private... Possibly, it is just a domain created to send spam mail. There is no website active at this URL.

About "my website":

While I was, for some time, the editor of a Translator Scammers Directory on my own domain, the TSD is now hosted on its own domain -- www.translator-scammers.com -- and it is published by the Translator Scammers Intelligence Group, with whom I am not associated. I remain a strong supporter of the TSD, though.



[Edited at 2014-08-15 21:02 GMT]

[Edited at 2014-08-15 21:03 GMT]
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Joakim Braun  Identity Verified
Sweden
Local time: 06:37
German to Swedish
+ ...
"My name is X" Aug 16, 2014

Rule of thumb: When e-mails start "my name is X", they're scams.

 

Thayenga  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 06:37
Member (2009)
English to German
+ ...
Yes. Aug 16, 2014

Joakim Braun wrote:

Rule of thumb: When e-mails start "my name is X", they're scams.


The same applies to emails starting with "Dear" and no name, not even a Ma'am.

And seriously, who would pay 4K upfront for anything? I sure wouldn't.


 

Tom in London
United Kingdom
Local time: 05:37
Member (2008)
Italian to English
Me too Aug 16, 2014

Thomas Shou wrote:

Dear All,
Has anyone gotten this email from "Terry"?


Yes, I got it this morning, read about 3 lines, and trashed it. Life is too short, etc.

I do seem to be getting an increasing number of blanket emails via Proz that are obviously the same message that has been sent at random to hundreds or thousands of Prozians. They're easy to spot.

[Edited at 2014-08-16 08:17 GMT]


 

LilianNekipelov  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 00:37
Russian to English
+ ...
100% scam. Aug 16, 2014

Not the slightest doubt.

 

Michael Bastin  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 06:37
Member (2004)
English to French
+ ...
Definitely a scam (Terry Gilbert) Sep 15, 2014

I almost fell for that one, but since I got fooled once before, I was extra cautious this time.

I was contacted on a Sunday (14/09/2014)...twice, he seemed in urgency to get an answer. Typical of scammers who want you to react quickly since they let you think you might land a big job.

Subject was about English>French translation, and then the text was in French. Called "Discrimination raciale" and it was for a translation to English.

Email didn't have a si
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I almost fell for that one, but since I got fooled once before, I was extra cautious this time.

I was contacted on a Sunday (14/09/2014)...twice, he seemed in urgency to get an answer. Typical of scammers who want you to react quickly since they let you think you might land a big job.

Subject was about English>French translation, and then the text was in French. Called "Discrimination raciale" and it was for a translation to English.

Email didn't have a signature. I checked the domain name of his email address: terry@mrterryg.com and didn't find anything conclusive. Invalid header too.

That was his first email to my private email.

Hello,
I have documents that needs to be Translated, The title of the article is recial discrimination and it has 23104 words which needs to be translated from french into english and has the deadline of 1st of october 2014.
Please email back if you are interested for details

Second email:

Thank you for getting back to me in time, i have two articles to translate from French to English, The article are for publication.
The title of the document is "Racial Discrimination" attached is a copy of the first document
the first contain 16,590 words. while the second document contain 10,409 words.
how much do you charge per word? i have it in mind to work on 15 cents per word but am open to negotiations.
the deadline for the document is 1st of October will you be able to work this out with the time frame? if yes then get back to me with your quote for both document and we could work out a deal.
Thanks

Then I received a similar request though my business website, possibly from someone who fell in the trap and who was looking for a translator.

Message:
Needs to be translated from French to English and has the deadline of 1st of October 2014. Please send a quote ASAP.




[Edited at 2015-01-12 17:42 GMT]
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José Henrique Lamensdorf  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 01:37
English to Portuguese
+ ...
In memoriam
More identifiers Sep 15, 2014

Joakim Braun wrote:

Rule of thumb: When e-mails start "my name is X", they're scams.


When the sender of the e-mail is "Mr.", "Mrs.", "Dr.", "Professor", "Attorney", etc. something, you may delete it as a scam before opening.

[I get the impression that a person's name alone may be demeaning in Nigeria.]

If nevertheless you open it, the message will often read like...
My name is Attorney Lewaro Mwamba...

I feel tempted to write them back:

Dear Attorney,

May I call you Tony?


 

Monica Rightenour
Local time: 00:37
Member (2011)
French to English
+ ...
I got the same message Sep 21, 2014

I got the same message today (September, 21, 2014).
I applied to the job on Elance and he asked me to send him a personal message.
He offered to send me a check, paying in advance.
It does not look like legitimate business. Nobody pays over $2500 in advance for an article.
I will ask him to open the escrow on Elance. I am sure it will never happen.


 

Carrie Kuehl  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 00:37
Member (2013)
French to English
+ ...
Price for a valuable lesson: a bank fee and 20 wasted hours. Oct 2, 2014

Thank you to ProZ translators who took the time to write to the forum about this scam. I will have to pay a $12 bank fee for their “service” of returning a fraudulent check and I wasted approximately 20 hours on a translation, but you saved me from any other harm.

I applied for a translation job on another translators’ job site, a month ago. I received the following email on September 21:

“Thank you for getting back to me in time, i have two articles to transl
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Thank you to ProZ translators who took the time to write to the forum about this scam. I will have to pay a $12 bank fee for their “service” of returning a fraudulent check and I wasted approximately 20 hours on a translation, but you saved me from any other harm.

I applied for a translation job on another translators’ job site, a month ago. I received the following email on September 21:

“Thank you for getting back to me in time, i have two articles to translate from French To English The article are for publication.
The title of the document is "Gun Control" attached is a copy of the first document
the first contain 16900 words. while the second document contain 13409 words.
how much do you charge per word? i have it in mind to work on 15 cents per word but am open to negotiations.
the deadline for the document is 1st of october, will you be able to work this out with the time frame? if yes then get back to me with your quote for both document and we could work out a deal.”

I received a poorly-organized document written in fractured French. The scammer said that he lives in the United States but does not “do paypal” and needed my mailing address. After working on the translation for 3 days, a check from Bioinformation Worldwide in Roseville, Minnesota was sent to me using Fed Ex. There is a scientific research company with a very similar name. The check is being returned by my bank. I deleted all correspondance and the dreadful source document and plan to have no further contact with this scammer. Unfortunately, since he apparently operates outside the United States, my bank believes there’s nothing else we can do.

If a translation job just doesn’t seem logical and the rates seem too-good-to-be-believable, beware. Why would someone capable of writing somewhat-correct emails in English write a lengty, poorly-organized article in bizarre French about gun control in the United States. The article contradicted itself from one paragraph to the next, hardly publishable material even from a possible undergraduate student. As a new freelancer, I have accepted legitimate jobs and been paid 5 euro cents up to $.10 cents U.S., but 15 cents a word seemed unheard-of and very unusual.

Although I could not find Gilbert Terry or Terry Gilbert using google, a friend did find information from ProZ translators using his email address, mrterryg.com. I’ve used the blueboard to check on companies, but hadn’t tried using proZ to check on individual, private clients. There are honest and often generous individual clients out there, whose need for a translation is genuine and believable and who answered questions about themselves. Mrterryg certainly is not one of them! Thank you for translator solidarity and sharing-of-information!
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Kamila Sławińska  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 00:37
English to Polish
+ ...
One I (sadly) fell for Oct 3, 2014

I was approached (=emailed) by someone who (after I Googled them) seemed like a legit person: a U.S. journalist, covering Eastern Europe, in desperate need of a quick translation into Polish. I named my price; they accepted, and send over the text which seemed like a legit paper on a relevant issue. The guy claimed to be in Ukraine on assignment and told me his accountant will be sending me a check via Fedex.

The check (a cashiers check) arrived in a few days - but it was made for
... See more
I was approached (=emailed) by someone who (after I Googled them) seemed like a legit person: a U.S. journalist, covering Eastern Europe, in desperate need of a quick translation into Polish. I named my price; they accepted, and send over the text which seemed like a legit paper on a relevant issue. The guy claimed to be in Ukraine on assignment and told me his accountant will be sending me a check via Fedex.

The check (a cashiers check) arrived in a few days - but it was made for the amount much higher than what we agreed on. I was asked to keep my fee and remit the rest through Western Union money transfer - my "client" said that the reminder was for his travel expenses, necessary for him to leave the conflict zone and get home safely. In my endless stupidity I did what he asked, and send the money where instructed - to a complete stranger in Kiev. Better yet, I send my "client" a sweet note acknowledging the transaction and wishing him a safe trip home.

Needless to say, the check turned out forged, my account is now blocked and I have no clue how I am going to repay the bank what they say now I owe them.

And before anyone rushes with "could have" or "should have" - you should know that I am an Eastern European by birth and a lapsed journalist with a strong sense of professional solidarity...

The operation is obviously international and seems to be targeting our profession more and more - so I hope this will make more people more cautious.
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Does this sound like another scam?

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