The internet has come up with numerous benefits with freelancing being a pillar on how professionals can make money while working at home. There are also numerous platforms that have come up with varying business models. For instance, Upwork is one popular platform that is used by literally thousands of clients as well as freelancers. While clients are able to choose who to work with, freelancers compete to get clients by bidding on their particular projects. However, there are challenges that freelancers will always face on these freelancing platforms - and one of them is scam jobs. Read on to know more about how to spot freelancer scams.
How to detect scammers on Upwork and other freelancing sites?
There are scammers everywhere and freelancing is no exception, especially when it comes to working online like Upwork. As a word of advice, before you bid on any job that you think you can work on, you must evaluate whether it is scam-like or not. This will always save torrents of pain in regard to time wasted and other related issues. In as far as everything is concerned, you must be on the lookout. Here are some of the important factors that freelancers need to consider.
Poor client profile
It is important to look at clients' profiles before bidding on any project, and try to find out how many disputes he has handled, and of course the number of tasks he has been able to pay. This is a clear-cut indicator whether the client can be trusted or not. Remember that not every client with a blank profile is bad. In fact, some will pay top dollar as long as you agree on terms of engagement. If he has a verified payment method, it is more likely that he will be able to pay for the work done - this is not always the case with clients with unverified payment methods.
Vague job descriptions
There are some dubious clients who will post hard-to-understand job descriptions so that they can confuse freelancers or something. In some cases, the job descriptions will be vague with no specifics on payment schedule, amount of work, experience needed, and such things. If you are looking for work on Upwork, consider payment structure and anything in this line.
Free sample / trial
In most cases, clients who will tell you that they need a free sample are most likely not to pay. However, there are others who will pay for any sample work you do. In this case, you should ask prior to do doing any task whether it is a free sample or not. If it's paid, then you can go ahead and do. Also, in this particular circumstance, see to it that the clients profile does not have any questionable details. There are times that scammers will ask for free samples from many freelancers and then disappear behind the scene.
Always in a hurry
If you apply for a job on Upwork and feel like you are being pushed by the client to deliver tasks within an exceptionally limited timeframe, then you should tread carefully. In some cases, clients who have urgent work will always give you a reasonable deadline and inquire whether you will be able to beat the deadline. Furthermore, they will not push you to do any extra work without indicating anything to do with payments. If the client is always in a hurry with no talk on payments, then do not do the job. In fact, make it a point to flag the job.
Need to pay something
You are likely to see jobs that will tell you to buy or pay certain product and get some amount of money. After reading the job description and evaluating client’s profile, you should take note of whether they need you to purchase anything or pay for some services. If this happens, it is more likely that you will be faced with problems in the near future. Therefore, do not pay for anything because you're there to find good paying clients.
There are quite a number of solutions that you can go for to avoid being scammed by those bad guys. In order to make the entire platform scam-free, you can report the client to the administration. If the job being offered is fixed, make it a point to apply escrow protection. It will not only save you time, but also money in the long run. Also, see to it that you get the best possible explanation on tasks at hand before you begin working.
Last but least, Upwork is full of lenient clients who will happily pay for your work. While there are issues of scams on the platform, measures have taken to limit unfortunate incidences. It is all about being quite keen when applying for jobs online no matter the platform you prefer to work on.