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Scammers on Upwork

Active Member
Diana M Member Since: Jan 20, 2018
11 of 145

Hey guys, 

My agency's head writer, **Edited for Community Guidelines** was communicating with a source he eventually believed to be a scam company, **Edited for Community Guidelines**. Once he expressed his scepticism to the company's representative, J**Edited for Community Guidelines**, he was sent to a link explaining why the company didn't get along with Upwork and was then immediately logged out. He is not able to log back in.

This is extremely worrying and I can't find a single Upwork worker who has experienced anything like it. His money and bank information is on that account, available to whoever has hacked his account.  I think this is either an extreme scam attempt or a mishap on Upwork's part.

Please respond immediately with help.

Thanks so much, 


Valeria K Moderator Member Since: Mar 6, 2014
12 of 145



I see you already have a supports ticket with us about this issue. Could you please share more information about the account you are referring to privately via that ticket request? Do you have a link to the writer's profile?

~ Valeria
Community Guru
Kathy T Member Since: Jul 17, 2015
13 of 145

Meral - You asked Does upwork have any protocols for vetting their job posters??


Yes, the protocol they have is YOU. 


You can vet job posters in several ways. When you see the word Hangout, as in Google Hangouts you know that it's a scam. That's were the majority of scammers hang out and direct you to. When you see a job that violates Upwork's TOS then report it by flagging it or creating a ticket. This job, in itself, does not indicate to Upwork that it's a scam job as there's nothing in the description that violates the TOS. At this point all you can do is to know it's a scam and move on. But if you establish communication with a client and in that dialog they ask for personal information, or to pay you outside of this platform, (by sending you a check) or ask you to pay them for equipment or fees of any kind, then you can copy that dialog and send it to Upwork so they can suspend the clients account.



Active Member
Al W Member Since: Nov 14, 2017
14 of 145

Just happened to me exactly as you described. Fortunately I realized it was a scam before I sent them any personal banking information for the Direct Deposit. My word... there are some sharks out there. Be warned Folks. I wasted an entire day being 'interviewed' by scammer. Argh.


Active Member
Jordan S Member Since: Nov 9, 2017
15 of 145

Yep I actually had a poster from one of the first purposals I sent out emailed me today talking about sending a check. Seems to me like there are more scammers than actual jobs being posted. Ive cut down the amount of Purposals tremendously. A shame though, as I was really looking forward to using upwork. There are more than enough outlets to make money online that actually do prevent things like this from happening so it appears as though I'll be spending more time on those sites than here.

Valeria K Moderator Member Since: Mar 6, 2014
16 of 145

Hi Jordan,


Unfortunately, these invites mostly target new freelancers and many experienced freelancer have noted that they don't receive invites from scam jobs. We will continue improving our internal automatic and manual systems that detect jobs with ToS violations.

For more tips on avoiding questionable interviews, check out this post.


~ Valeria
Active Member
Nor Mazlee B Member Since: Feb 10, 2018
17 of 145



I am bit suspicious when I see certain profiles on upwork.  Scammers mostly don't put their details on their profile?  How to trace them? Because  I am in the process now applying for a job on Upwork,quite worrying about this now when I have seen a lot of comments about scammers here.

Active Member
Vanessa V Member Since: Jun 15, 2018
18 of 145

Thank you for you very informative post! I was contacted and invited to submit a proposal to a job, which I did. I was then instructed to contact an individual via google hangouts to be "briefed". I chatted with **Edited for Community Guidelines**. We interviewed for about 30 mins. She asked general interview questions and all her responses seemed very scripted and some of the grammer was completely off. At the end of the interview, she stated she would forward our conversation to the department head for review. 10 mins later, she came back and congratulated me saying I was being offered the job. She then said they would be sending me a check to use for purchasing equipment for my home office and asked if I can be considered reliable with company funds. Instantly, this confirmed that it was a scam. She then told me to report back the next morning at 9am my time to receive an official offer letter. So I decided to play along to see how far she was going to go. I reported at 9am and she said she would be emailing me the letter and to please sign it and send it back to a **Edited for Community Guidelines** along with an valid ID I have such as a driver's license. (Obviously I wasn't going to give any information). I have never worked with Upwork before and my first "job interview" was a scam. Not feeling confident with Upwork at all. 

Valeria K Moderator Member Since: Mar 6, 2014
19 of 145

Sorry to hear about your experience, Vanessa.


I checked and can confirm that the job post you are referring to was already actioned and client's account addressed for violating Upwork ToS. Please take a look at the list of tips for recognizing fraudulent jobs Lena compiled and posted here.

~ Valeria
Active Member
Jeanne M Member Since: Oct 17, 2018
20 of 145

This sounds exactly like what just happened to me.  Same MO, just about the same timeline, same "interview"...the works.  They've refined their scam, though, because they sent a letter for signature, but didn't require an ID.  They also stated that training would begin the next morning, at which time I would also start being paid; after reading this thread I am positive that they would have been asking for money for the software.  I agree, though; it's very disheartening when it's the first experience you have on Upwork.