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Scam, scam, all day long

Opened Upwork to apply to jobs, first job - scam, second job - scam. Only on 1st page 3 scam jobs! I also received an invite today from a client that wanted to use my account! I've been on Upwork for a decade now and have never seen scammers feel so at home here!


If you look you can see that all these posts typically include email addresses, the client's payment method is not verified? Why not use these markers to automatically tag the job as a scam and give it low priority so freelancers don't come across it? Why allow clients with unverified payment methods to even post at all?


Is this lack of attention on Upwork's part or the scam posts consume number of connects and the system finds it profitable to allow the posts to live? 


It's getting really tiring to report almost every 3rd job, and even to find a job. Please fix this!


Hi Tatevik,


I'm sorry to hear about this. Could you please send me a private message with the job post links you're referring to so I could forward your report to the team directly?



Thank you, I do appreciate the help, but I've already contacted support and use the flagging option to report these jobs. My frustration is with the system as these scam jobs are everywhere 😦

Hi Andrea,


I don't think is matter of specific cases, because there are so many, and most of them are are reusing the same post. For example a jobs is reported after someday is turned down, a few days after there is a new post again with exactly the same description, other example there hundreds of posts including in the description the same url that points to a nothing releated to the job, it's just trafic. I understand that block scams is complicated, but many cases are seems really easy to identify.


Ha! Good luck with seeing any of those suggestions implemented and get ready to see them ridiculed. There are more scam posts here than ever but the consensus seems to be that UW can do nothing more than they already do to stop them, and that UW hasn't changed anything that let more of them appear, but that scammers are just more persistant everywhere, not just here, so we just have to get used to it, and heaven forbid, complain about it because nothing is going to change. Oh, and don't forget that scammers are attracted to UW because the freelancers here are gullible, uneducated and don't follow the ToS. If only freelancers would stop falling for them, the scammers would stop posting.

Sure, if all freelancers stop being gullible scammers will stop, because it will be year 3863 and we'll all be dead.

Ah, so you get that that is just not true, as many here would have you believe, blaming the freelancers for the amount of scams.

I have to agree with Peter. Complaining about scam job posts is pointless because neither will Upwork do something about it beyond a polite canned response, nor will you get much sympathy from other freelancers (with a few exceptions). Not only that, but as Peter pointed out it is very likely that a few of Upwork's staunchest defenders that lurk around here will pile on you to tell you how you are doing it wrong if you are paying attention to or falling for any of those scams. It´s all on you, girl!

Gergana K wrote:

Complaining about scam job posts is pointless because neither will Upwork do something about it beyond a polite canned response, nor will you get much sympathy from other freelancers (with a few exceptions). 

That's because the "something" that Peter and others want done is to force clients to verify their payment methods before posting a job, or force them to pay a fee in order to post a job. I get hired by a lot of clients who are new to the platform, so yes, I'm going to push back on any suggestion that will harm my business. It's a case of defending my own interests, not Upwork.


If a freelancer only wants to work with verified clients or clients with good reviews, it's possible to set up a filter for that and not see any of the fake cheque scam posts or the "give me a security deposit" posts. But this simple suggestion has been repeatedly rejected, for reasons that are unclear to me. If you don't want to see unverified posts, then fine, don't look at them - why do you have to try and prevent me from seeing them, if I'm happy to take my chances?

Actually I don´t have a problem with unverified payment per se - I didn´t even mention that in my reply because it´s not a big issue for me (I have long-term clients so I don´t really look for jobs too actively). There are certainly more obvious ways than unverified payment to tell if someone is a scammer. But I think the original poster was referring to clients who both give their email addresses or WhatsApp numbers in their listings *and* also have an unverified payment method (and possibly other red flags, which lead her to think they are scammers).


The point of her post - and of my own comment - is that there are indeed a lot of scam clients and this leads to a frustrating user experience for people actively looking for jobs and scanning the timeline often. Many others have already raised this topic, so it´s not about Upwork preventing *you* from seeing posts with unverified payment, but about providing a more credible platform for all freelancers. How UW chooses to go about it is up to them - maybe they can tweak their algorithms to catch scammers in clear violation of TOS sooner and not rely solely on FLs to flag such posts again and again - but the point is that a lot of us do wish Upwork would be more proactive about this. 

If payment verification is not necessary to hire, which admittedly to me sounds like a bad idea from the get go, it would make more sense to have "Payment Verified" filter turned on for all freelancers by default, and then freelancers who want to still see them can turn it on themselves. This would keep the main pool concentrated with clients who are legit, with a side pool of possibly legit clients along with scammers. The side pool would be less visited, and that would both motivate legit clients to verify their method to get more attention and demotivate scammers since they will never verify their method and will stay with no attention. 


I definitely do not want to harm other freelancers business, I just want to improve the experience here. Currently it's like having an email that doesn't have a spam folder. While I myself may not be "gullible" to fall for these posts, I do care about freelancers that do. They should be protected better even if they are new or not tech-savvy. Scammers don't deserve to have easy time targeting honest, be it gullible, hard working people.


Upwork was always a scam fest, I wasn't aware it got worse because I only did long term jobs and now I retired from working for other people. If this is true, and it got even worse, I can't even imagine the carnage.


As other people pointed out, Upwork will never do a thing to stop them (I know it from direct experience), just some canned answer and that's it. Guess you'll need to be very alert and hope for the best.

Yes definitely got worse, every page has few scam posts, same markers - fixed job, around 1.5k, with email address, and no payment verification. How hard is it have the system catch those and mark as spam, maybe put in a "Suspicious" tab or something.

Tatevik G wrote:

How hard is it have the system catch those and mark as spam, maybe put in a "Suspicious" tab or something.

I totally agree with that part.

Any job post with @ or even (at) should go straight into a queue that is manually approved or rejected.


There are, no doubt, things Upwork could easily do and aren't doing right now. Which needs improving.


Clients not having a verified payment method, however, isn't a red flag by itself and I would strongly object to anything that would deter new clients to post a first job post.


If freelancers don't feel confident with such job posts, they can just filter out job posts posted by clients who haven't yet verified their payment method.


I have earned many tens of thousands of Dollars from such clients so I would certainly not support anything that would chase them to another platform.




Before this scamfestation I didn't even notice if client has Payment method verified or not, I'd apply to anything and only start working when it's verified, and mostly it would get verified within a few days. 


Even something as simple as flagging the scam post is only enabled in job page, not from listing page - making it harder for Freelancers to help out. Flagging them could be made easier, system could get smarter at spotting them, just throwing things out there. I'm sure if some AI specialist were to tackle this problem they would come up with amazing solutions.

Sounds good to me. As things stand now, post gets flagged, post gets removed, same post shows up again, gets removed again, rinse and repeat ad nauseam.

Nothing is going to change. What's even worse is that the same scam posts appear every day, over and over again. And even if they are all from different scammers copying and pasting from other scammers' posts, they ARE the same posts. Just ridiculous at this point.


Yes this is very exhausting!

I almost got scammed twice. The second was pretending to be **Edited for Community Guidelines** for proofreading. The amount of time put in is so frustrating.

The fake ones for that job seem to outnumber the real ones. I feel sorry for the real clients because I'm sure many people have stopped even aplying for such jobs. I know I have. Yeah, like I'm going to waste my time sending proposals to 10 jobs when 8 of them are going to turn out to be scams. Not even worth the effort.

Peter G wrote:

Yeah, like I'm going to waste my time sending proposals to 10 jobs when 8 of them are going to turn out to be scams. Not even worth the effort.

You of all people should be able to recognize the scam jobs from the real jobs by now be able to send your proposals to the 2 real jobs and ignore the 8 scam jobs.  I know I can.

Yeah, I can, but maybe I'm just doing that out of spite. For whom, I don't really know. I just scroll past them or don't even see/read them anymore, kind of like when your eyes ignore ads or sponsored content on websites.