What is ID fraud? According to the web-site of the US Department of Justice, “Identity theft and identity fraud are terms used to refer to all types of crime in which someone wrongfully obtains and uses another person’s personal data in some way that involves fraud or deception, typically for economic gain.”
We all are quite active on the Internet nowadays. However, we should be aware of ID frauds that become increasingly common. The translation industry also encounters problems of this kind. Translators’ resumes are stolen and used for illegal purposes. As translation companies often use services of remote translators they have never met personally, sometimes it is difficult to identify a person properly.
Translation companies prefer to cooperate with vendors who have proved to be reliable. However, when the deadline is pressing and approved translators are unavailable or busy, the company has to engage other translators. In this case it is required to be especially careful. Do not choose a translator only because he/she has immediately responded.
It would be preferable to have the translator’s telephone number to call him/her and his/her address. The address is to be verified. Sometimes, false translators provide their “home” addresses that turn out to be in industrial areas on Google Maps. Some translators can indicate a clear acceptable reason for that. Translator’s university degree and/or membership in professional associations, if any, must be verified too. In addition, it is possible to use resources of translator-scammers.com. This web-site contains a lot of information helping both translation agencies find scammers and translators protect their identity. It is also advisable to check out professional forums and portals, such as proz.com, translatorscafe.com and translationdirectory.com. These steps are time-consuming, but necessary to select a qualified and reliable translator.
When a Translation Project Manager fails to carry out such check-up and engages a translator who has stolen the other’s identity, the translator can deliver a mere machine translation. Considering the pressing deadline, the Project Manager has either to engage another translator and to pay him/her a rush fee or jeopardize the company’s reputation.
Moreover, the translation company cannot guarantee confidentiality to the client, even if the translator signs a Non Disclosure Agreement, as nobody would bet his bottom dollar the translator’s signature is genuine.
To preserve their reputation, professional translators should take certain precautions too. They are advised to inform all their clients that any translation assignment requires a telephonic confirmation. Those translators who have their own web-sites are usually considered as secure vendors. Furthermore, they need not use any free email services and hence it is difficult to steal their emails.
It is advised to send CV in PDF format and to protect it from changes and copy-paste with a password.
Please spend some time to minimize the risk of ID frauds. These skills will be helpful in any other area of your life. Nineteen persons become victims of identity theft every minute (see http://www.werockyourweb.com/identity-theft-statistics/).
A list of web-sites that provide interesting and useful information on the identity theft and related topics is available at: https://www.justice.gov/criminal-fraud/identity-theft/identity-theft-and-identity-fraud.
Do not let this happen to you!