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99562466
Community Member

Beware of a "BYPASS" Scam, **Edited**

Beware of an offer that comes from **Edited for community guidelines** Interior Design **Edited for community guidelines**, which is allegedly an interior design company in the Boston area.

They successfully bypass the active proposal and interview process of Upwork by sending an initial Message with a link to an interview Skype chat through the Message channel. It does get flagged by Upwork on the portal but it also gets sent to the freelancer via email by Upwork. That's the bypass! See the example message below. When I clicked Reply from the official Upwork email so I could get into my Upwork Message portal, the message inside my Upwork portal had been deleted.

I recommend not following any link to a Skype interview chat. Firstly, I found they (the scammers) operate outside of the process of Upwork. Secondly, they want the freelancer to use their specific computer equipment which requires a suspicious process of “we will be making the procurement funds available to you as a paycheck on the company's expense.” This statement is ambiguous, suspicious, and lousy grammar.

To those who may be moderating here, spare me the childish lecture about how I should not do this or that. I understand well. I investigated deliberately so I could be armed with knowledge for my own benefit. Now, I am sharing that knowledge for the benefit of other freelancers too. This post is to warn freelancers (and those at Upwork) that scammers have successfully bypassed Upwork and are able to send invitation links to freelancers going directly to their email and is officially from Upwork. In fact, Upwork should delay forwarding emails to freelancers until the contents of the email can be properly scanned for links such as those to Skype chat links, files, phone numbers, etc…

If you're a new freelancer, take note. If you are a veteran, also take note.

**Edited for community guidelines**

6 REPLIES 6
feed_my_eyes
Community Member

"Different time zones disrupt the interview's flow"??? But not if you use Skype? LOL. 

 

It sounds like you do need a lecture, because you are not allowed to use outside contact methods with clients before you have an Upwork contract. Repeat violations will result in your account being permanently banned.

 

Also, do you seriously think that a scammer would give you their real name and the business address where they could be found? Obviously, they do not - they look up real people and businesses and pretend to be them. So, you're accusing an innocent person and business here, which you're also not allowed to do.

 

I have multiple projects on the go with tight deadlines, so I do not want any delays to my email notifications. A better idea would be for you to click on the "Academy" link at the top of this page and learn how to use Upwork before you send any more proposals. Rules are in place to help newbies, and if you follow them, you'll be able to avoid most scams. 

ArjayM
Community Member

Hi James,

 

I've shared your report with our Trust & Safety team to give it the attention it deserves. Rest assured that this has been taken care of and action's been taken accordance to Upwork's TOS.

 

We genuinely appreciate you reaching out and bringing this to our attention.

 

~ Arjay
Upwork
35d0ef38
Community Member

Was this post a scam?  They are actively working with me.  **Edited for Community Guidelines** is the superviser. The first contact is **Edited for Community Guidelines**.  I have suggested they pay me through Upwork where it is secure.  Waiting on her response now

Vicki Wagner

Hi Arjay,

 

Is this company a scam? I have received an offer and do not want to be scammed. 

This definitely is a scam.  I just talked to the real person they are claiming to be and they are aware and said the FBI is investigating.

 

Hope they are the real FBI

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