11 Red Flags That SCREAM Freelancer Scam

11 Red Flags That SCREAM Freelancer Scam

There are a lot of online scams these days, and the freelancer world is not immune. In fact, it can be a particularly ripe environment for scammers looking to take advantage of unsuspecting victims. So how do you know if you’re being scammed by a freelancer? Well, look out for these 11 red flags! If you see any of them, it’s probably time to walk away…

1. They Claim To Be A Top Rated Freelancer

Any freelancer who’s been working for a while knows that the first thing you do when you’re starting out is claim to be a top rated freelancer.  It sounds impressive and it makes people want to hire you, but it also means nothing.  All it shows is that you’re great at marketing yourself, not that you’re actually a good freelancer.

2. They Make It Impossible To Get Paid

The absolute biggest scam in the freelance world is when you get hired off of Upwork or any other site only to have the person refuse to send you money for your work. Sometimes they don’t pay because they don’t have the money, which is one thing, but sometimes they flat-out say they don’t want to pay you.  They might even try to give some sob story about how things are tough for them at the moment or that they can’t afford it.  If someone isn’t willing to shell out your hard earned cash for your work, it’s a sure sign that they’re a scammer.

3. They Are Too Impatient To Hire A Freelancer

There are some clients who legitimately can’t afford to pay you right away and have too many other orders pending to hire you as a regular job, but scammers use this excuse all the time.  Since scammers know that a lot of people are just looking for quick cash, they try to use this as a way to get you to work for free.  If you’re suspicious about a client, make sure they can pay you first before starting the job.

4. They Refuse To Pay You Upfront

Clients who are truly looking for help will be happy to pay you before you do the work.  If they don’t want to fork over any money until you’re done, that’s a big warning sign.  Scammers know that if they take your time and effort without paying you anything upfront, there’s nothing stopping them from walking away when they’re done.

5. They Have No Idea What You’ll Be Doing

If a client is truly interested in you, they’ll take the time to tell you exactly what kind of work they need help with.  But scammers are too busy scamming multiple clients at once to care about specifics, so they just give generic information that anyone could do.  If you have to ask a lot of questions just to figure out what you’re getting into, it’s probably not worth your time.

6. They Are Friends With A Lot Of Other Freelancers

This one is especially common with Upwork jobs, where scammers are basically competing against each other for the same work.  Since freelancers are so desperate for jobs, scammers know they can trick them by saying they have “friends” who are also looking for work.  They’ll try to convince you that their friends are legitimate even though the jobs were just created out of thin air.  If they want you to apply for a job that doesn’t exist, just avoid that client.

7. They Are Too Nice

It’s such a simple thing but it’s surprising how many scammers mess this up: acting too nice!  They’re trying to make you feel comfortable, which is really important because the whole point of going through with a scam is to keep you from realizing you’re being scammed.  But if their niceness comes off as fake or overly aggressive, that’s a sign that you should run for the hills.

8. They Are Too Happy To Work With You

It’s easy to tell when someone is trying too hard to please you because it never works out!  If they’re constantly showering you with praise or compliments, it’s most likely a scam.  They’re just trying to make you feel good about working with them, but if they’re too nice, then there must be something wrong with them.

9. They Are In A Hurry To Hire You

This one is tricky because sometimes clients need you right away, which is why they specified the need for a freelancer.  But if it seems like they just want to hire you because they’re in a rush and don’t know how else to get the job done by themselves, there’s definitely something fishy going on.

10. They Offer Way Too Much Money

The best clients hire freelancers because they need your help and not just because you’re cheap.  If a client is offering way too much money compared to the work, then chances are that they’re trying to scam you.  After all, they want you to take their job but they’re not willing to pay what it’s worth!

11. They Do Not Care If You Work With Other People

This is another trick to convince you that they’re legit: if they don’t mind if you work with other people, it must mean that they’re not trying to scam you!  But scammers are sneaky and know just what to say in order to get you to trust them.  If they don’t care about whether you work with other people, it’s because they already have someone else in mind to take your place!

How can I tell when a client is not looking for help?

They will pay you before you do the work. If they want to pay after, then chances are it’s a scam. Also, if they give you generic information about the work then that’s a big red flag too!

How can I tell when a client is not looking for help?

They will pay you before you do the work. If they want to pay after, then chances are it’s a scam. Also, if they give you generic information about the work then that’s a big red flag too!

What happens if I work with a client and they turn out to be scammers?

If you already worked with them, there is nothing you can do. Just make sure it was not too much money involved! If you are still in the job then work as hard as you can to complete it greatly before your deadline! Report them after you are done with your work!

When should I report a client as a scam?

If they are giving you generic information or paying before work then that is a good sign that they are scammers. Tell the client what they are doing and if they don’t care, report them as scam!

What kind of things should I look out for when dealing with clients?

Watch out for people who only want to hire you and not your friends. They’re probably trying to scam you! Also, watch out for clients who don’t care if you work with other people because they already have someone else in mind!

To Sum Things Up

We hope that you have found this article helpful in identifying scams when hiring freelancers. It is important to protect yourself and your company from being scammed, so be sure to take these red flags into consideration before agreeing to work with someone new. If you haven’t already done so, comment below and share what other things are on your radar as potential warning signs of a scammer!

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