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Who are Those Spammers on ODesk?

Community Leader
Asif R Member Since: Jan 7, 2015
1 of 11

Dear Members !


I am on Odesk from last 20 days and regularly surf it for new jobs. I have noticed that there is an organized team of spammers on Odesk who are regularly posting fake jobs on Odesk and misguiding peoples (wasting time).


I wrote a note on these spammers and sent it on Odesk official FB page. The staff replied that we should report against them.


I have a suggestion for this purpose.


ODesk team should hire some moderators to look into new jobs regularly for such spammers and their accounts should be banned permanently via IP address.


They are really disturbing Odesk members who are interested to earn.





- Asif

Asif Rehman
Community Manager
Valeria K Community Manager Member Since: Mar 6, 2014
2 of 11

Hi Asif,


I understand how annoying it is to see spam job postings and it definitely affects the quality of the marketplace. oDesk Team is working hard on identifying and taking appropriate actions against such accounts and will work harder on improving the review process. We appreciate your help with reporting such jobs.


Thank you!

~ Valeria
Active Member
Frenciz Ray P Member Since: Feb 3, 2015
3 of 11

Hi, I am new to Odesk and I badly need help. How will I know that the job is just a spam?

Community Guru
Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
4 of 11
Frenciz, you do not need to worry about whether or not you will know if a job posting is spam or not. A spam job posting is one that, by definition, is obviously spam when you see it. It is clearly not a real job posting but is an advertisement for something or a bulk posting or is for some reason clearly not a real oDesk job listing. It wastes our time to sift through these, but it isn't fooling us.

A different type of problem is a fraudulent posting, which looks like a real job posting, but is posted by a client who does not really plan to pay a contractor, or doesn't plan to pay on a reasonable way. This, too, is wrong, but this would not be classified as spam, it would be classified as fraud.

The fraudulent job posting is much harder to spot, and may be impossible to distinguish from a real job posting until you are actually interviewing or even working s job. Basically if a client asks you to work but doesn't pay you, then you know you are dealing with a fraud. Other signs that you are dealing with a fraudulent client include any attempt to pay you outside of the oDesk platform, or anybody asking you for your login information to accounts (eBay, oDesk, iTunes, Facebook, etc.), or anybody asking you to send them scans of your personal identity papers, such as drivers licenses. (It is okay for oDesk to ask for identification papers and ID cards because they are the platform which is hosting your account profile. Clients do not need to ask for that type of information from you because oDesk itself serves as verification of your identity.)
Community Guru
Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
5 of 11
Asif, you are speaking here about something which really is a problem, but banning people by IP address is not really a workable solution because IP addresses are often dynamically allocated and are not necessarily associated with a specific user. An Internet service provider might serve up IP addresses from the same pool of addresses to everybody in the same town or region. Also, spammers use techniques that mask or spoof their address. In fact, spammers have have sent out spam or posted spam while using what appears to be your IP address. That means if oDesk bans the IP addresses of anybody who posts spam, then they would ban you from oDesk, even though you are not a spammer.
Community Guru
Md Rahatur R Member Since: Apr 17, 2013
6 of 11

I see that all the spammers have got no verified payment method.
Why don’t oDesk make the payment method verification mandatory before posting a job? That way we can get rid off the spammers to a level. I am sure the real clients would not mind getting the payment method verified before posting.

Community Guru
Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
7 of 11
Rahatur, I believe there are legitimate marketing and sales reasons why oDesk allows jobs to be posted without having payment verified. It may be attractive to a new client to be able to post a job without having to provide payment information. Then they can see that their job posting really does bring on qualified contractors who are willing and able to do the work they need done.

It is then the responsibility of the contractors to make sure that they only work for trustworthy clients or to make sure that the client's are payment verified before working for them.

Maybe it is due to the type of work I do, or the level at which I work, but I do not personally have any trouble with clients trying to scam me or trying to not pay me. My clients are probably all afraid of not paying me because they know if they tried to defraud me in any way that I would not work for them again.
Community Guru
Darrin O Member Since: Jan 20, 2015
8 of 11

"spammers have have sent out spam or posted spam while using what appears to be your IP address"


Not to get overly technical, but that's just not true.  The vast majority of Internet services are transactional, which makes it next to impossible to spoof a source IP.


And while IPs don't identify an individual, they can be used to identify a "bad neighborhood".  The problem for oDesk in banning by IP would then be one of figuring out whether or not the good users and the bad users really are in different neighborhoods, or if there are neighborhoods that are so bad that it's worth losing a few good users that might be stuck in them.


As a freelancer, though, I see plenty of information far above the IP level that makes it easy for me to identify job posters who are time wasters.  The main problem is that oDesk doesn't provide me the tools to filter out that garbage globally.  For example, I would love to be able ignore a client and never see anything they do on oDesk ever.  The fact that I can't do that, and the widespread anonymity that clients are allowed, makes oDesk a very attractive target for abusers.


Community Guru
Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
9 of 11

"I would love to be able ignore a client and never see anything they do on oDesk ever."

That would work SOMEtimes.


The problem is that many of the clients you wish to ignore actually have had their oDesk accounts closed permanently - fairly soon after they posted their inappropriate job listings.


But they then opened up new client accounts and began posting the same types of jobs.

Community Guru
Darrin O Member Since: Jan 20, 2015
10 of 11

I understand that, but you have to start somewhere.  It's still playing whack-a-mole, but at least I wouldn't have to hit the same one over and over again.  Limiting the scope of abuse is a good first start.  The ability to easily ignore clients also provides useful statistics to oDesk so that they can better close those accounts.