I was (nearly) scammed by a user named **Edited for Community Guidelines** with a web development job offer.
He sent me directly to Skype where a user named **Edited for Community Guidelines** led me down a whole interview process via chat. She had coding questions, assured me that a check would come to me for the appropriate "tools" for the job and then when the check didn't ship a third time ("FedEx problem") she emailed me a check to print out and deposit with my phone banking app.
I got suspicious. Looked up her email **Edited for Community Guidelines** in Google and all I found was SPAMSPAMSPAM!
I wanted to be as detailed as I could in this thread so people can find it (or Upwork will improve their client vetting) because I was really excited about the opportunity to work as a Freelance Developer. All my hard work paid off! I was being appreciated for my talent!
But NO! Fraud instead.
Luckily, I didn't print the check or go any further with **Edited for Community Guidelines** . The best I can do is write this message to get the word out: SCAMMERS! We won't take this!
Upwork, you owe me.
Solved! Go to Solution.
Yikes! I've been doing this for a very long time, so if someone immediately asks to "message" them on Skype I'm leery. I DO schedule phone calls and I do talk with clients on Skype, but I never complete any work whatsoever unless the contract details are on Upwork and I've started a contract (with any milestones funded).
There have been a few that tried to get me to connect with them on Skype and I can almost always tell it's fishy. You just have to pay attention to the way things are worded and your gut. There was a red flag when she offered to send you money before you did any work (that's a classic scammer tactic). It's a play on the "I'm sending you a check for more than I owe, you send me the change."
Luckily you didn't go through with it or you could have been up a creek!
Make sure you flag their profile so they can be removed!
@Luke Carl H wrote:
Thanks Angela. I dont know how to report a user?
Be aware that you have already reported yourself of the most serious violation of the terms of service: Agreeing to receiving payment outside the platform.
And of course the check was fake. Oldest, dumbest scam on the net.
There is no job.
Do you people ever THINK about the fact that nobody sends a REAL check to some stranger they met on a random website? Be grateful the paper check never arrived, you would have banked it, sent (real) money to the scammer, then the check would (of course) have bounced and you'd be out thousands.
As is you might "only" get your Upwork account suspended.
Hi Petra, I appreciate your feedback.
I feel like I'd been duped. You're right, I should have recognized that we cannot accept money outside of the Upwork app. I just signed on with Upwork Monday & I'm making rookie mistakes. I apologize for that.
But, I will say, I asked this scammer several times why we weren't going through Upwork and they assured me we would once the check arrived. I got excited and it fogged my judgment.
Now I know for sure not to accept payment outside of Upwork or believe random people will send me a check. Haha, I feel so dumb. Sorry for my oversight. It wont happen again.
This is a well-known scam that has been going for years, but when you accepted that "check" to be mailed to you, you were violating the ToS by accepting payments outside work, so you're not out of the woods yet!
Thanks, Elba for getting back to me.
I wish I could take a huge step backward. Honestly, I didn't even think about Upwork being skipped out. I thought that the companies pay Upwork to post jobs and this strange transaction was all part of the deal.
Well, I really learned my lesson there.
I hope I don't get suspended. I made a super rookie mistake. This is my first experience with online freelance work and I will never go down that road again.
The client that you're referring to is being reviewed by the team for ToS violations and I can see that the job has already been removed. You may want to check out this thread for tips on avoiding scams and staying safe on Upwork, and the team may reach out to you directly with more information regarding keeping payments on the platform. Thanks!
The first bullet on the thread you sent. . . I totally fell for it.
I will watch closely from now on.
Thanks a ton for helping me out with this (thanks to everyone).
Have a great day,