Watch out for scammers on Odesk

My first project with Odesk was completed very professionally and sucessfully.  However not so with the second project.  It was a small project and I selected this contractor **edited for Community Guidelines**  As an impetus to get it done quickly I agree to give him some prepayment.  Unfortunately I was taken by a scammer.  He took the money and never delivered as much as a single line of code.  I cannot fault Odesk, but would like to pass on this experience to people hiring and also suggest a way for Odesk to protect its most valuable assets, people who post jobs.

1. No prepayment whatsoever.  At least ask for a plan which can be done easily and shows some committments.  

2. Do not pay anything if the contractor has no previous success completed jobs on Odesk until you are satisfied.


For Odesk

1. Flag a new contractor for job posters to see clearly.

2. Make a new contractor put up a bond.  Anything will do.  This shows committment.

3. The select process in place is not enough to catch scammers.  Do a better job.

4. Give job posters ability to recall payment within a specific time, say, 1 day. 3 would be better.

5. Buy insurance against scammers for the benefit of job posters.  Ebay guarantees delivery, Odesk can insure against scammers.  Not success of the project, but against scammers who do not deliver anything like this one.

6. In locations where there are Internet fraud laws, prosecute.  It is Odesk's reputation. 

7. Post the scammers information where people can find it. Create a repository of such information. He will likely do it again elsewhere.


I accept the loss and the misteps aremine.  It is not a large amount of money, but it irritates me that a good platform like Odesk can still be abused.  Odesk and the community needs to make it more fraud proof.


Thanks for listening.


Saksiri, sorry for your poor experience but the tools needed to protect yourself from a poor experience like that, are already in place. You just chose to not use them. 


Given that you have paid your freelancer, you can now leave a devastating rating to warn others, I don't see one on the freelancer's profile. 


Hi Saksiri,


That was really disappointing. The qualified freelancers who are working hard and delivering their best are struggling to get jobs but these newbies scammers are getting huge jobs. It is very disapponting.


Here are the points which you should keep in mind while hiring someone:


1- Make sure he/she has proper reputation and experience as it will help you guarantee your work done.


2- Try to choose from freelancers who have been proper cover letter and have answered your question clearly.


3- If you have sceptical, then go with the recommneded freelancer sby Odesk. It will assure you MONEY BACK GUARANTEE if he/she fails to deliver the project.


4- Pay in Milestones: Make milestones for each steps so it will lesser money on risk.


5- Communicate properly: Be assure he/she is communicating consistently and giving report of the progress if so everything is going fine and he/she is working on your project.


Let me know if it helps