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farmer_janiah
Community Member

Scam?

Hey all. I'm fairly new to the Upwork platform. I submitted a proposal to a job and client contacted me with link to interview via Skype. They want me to add the director's email, then await reply. There are some typos in the description. Client has a 3.83 star review and has payment verified. I'm just scared to do something and get scammed.
8 REPLIES 8
prestonhunter
Community Member

Janiah:
You are wise to be cautious.

New Upwork freelancers are indeed targeted by scammers.

 

If a client isn't perfect in the way they write English, it doesn't necessarily mean they are a scammer.

 

Payment verified? Already has a star average from freelancer feedback?
That is NOT typically what we see when we encounter scammers.

 

They want to add you to the director's email?

That DOES sound like a scammer.

Asking you to follow a link to interview via Skype?
Scammers do that.
But an inexperienced client might do that as well.

 

IT DOES NOT MATTER whether this is a scammer or not when it comes to what you do about that Skype interview request:

On June 26, 2020, Upwork changed their rules so that you (as a freelancer) are not allowed to do an interview via Skype. You may not communicate with potential clients off-platform.

 

Until you have a contract in place.
Once you have an official Upwork contract, you may use Skype or any other communication tool.

 

Upwork provides video-conferencing and audio call capabilities WITHIN the Upwork Messages tool. You may also communicate with potential clients using an Upwork-provided Zoom session. Or just chat via Upwork Messages.

With all of these communication possibilities, there is no reason for you to need to communicate with this potential client via Skype.

 

Tell the prospective client:
"Yes, I would be happy to do an interview. We can use the Upwork Messages tool to do an interview using chat, or an audio call, or an audio-video conferencing call, or we can use Upwork's built-in Zoom feature. Which would you prefer?"

 

=====

re: "I'm just scared to do something and get scammed."

 

You can simply block that potential client (or potential scammer) if you want to.

But if you want to learn more about how to use Upwork properly, and also possibly learn more about scammers, then you may go ahead and schedule an interview with this person.

 

If you don't provide them with any personal or financial information, and if you come back to this thread to report what happened during the interview, then you should be fine.

 

Keep us up to date about what is going on, and we'll be able to help you avoid any scams or other problems.

No contract. The job post has actually been removed now. I completed the
questionnaire and now I'm "hired"

I have blocked contact with the client since the job post was removed due to violation of Terms of Service. I'm really tired of not finding legit work.

Hi Janiah,

 

Thank you for flagging this for us. I'll be sure to share this report with the correct team for their review and appropriate action will be taken according to our internal processes. 

 

In cases like this, you can let them know that sharing contact information before a contract has started is against Upwork’s Terms of Service and that all communications prior to the contract starting must take place on Upwork. We also encourage you to let us know if a TOS violation has happened by using the “Flag as Inappropriate” option throughout the platform. You can learn more about user reporting here.

 

Thank you!

~ Bojan
Upwork

Were there any security breaches on your computer or accounts after you blocked the client? I searched this too late and was in the middle of being scammed myself before I found this thread.


Logan R wrote:

Were there any security breaches on your computer or accounts after you blocked the client? I searched this too late and was in the middle of being scammed myself before I found this thread.


This thread is from last year. If you review the material available for new users in the Help and Support pages and in the forum section dedicated to new users, and comply with the ToS, you should be fine. If you have not worked as an independent contractor before, you might want to do some reading about freelancing, also. 

BojanS
Community Manager
Community Manager

Hi Logan,

 

Thank you for flagging this for us. I’ve escalated this report to the correct team for their review and the project has already been taken down because it was in violation of Upwork TOS and action has been taken on the client account. Please check this help article for crucial information that will help you have a safe and successful journey on Upwork.  If you see a violation of the Upwork Terms of Service, we encourage you to use the Report Suspicious User Activity feature. 

~ Bojan
Upwork

re: "No contract. The job post has actually been removed now. I completed the questionnaire and now I'm 'hired'"

 

Sorry about that.

For future reference.... real clients don't ask freelancers to fill out questionnaires like that. That's something that scammers do. But not all scammers. There are other scams that don't use questionnaires.

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