New/old scams to watch out for

While the “gift card” scam doesn’t specifically target translators/interpreters, it’s something to watch out for, especially since scammers tend to “recycle” their scams, with slight modifications to tailor them to a particular target group.

Gift card scammers typically try to convince you to purchase and send gift cards as a form of payment. Legitimate businesses will never call you to ask for payment through gift cards. Gift cards are intended to be a gift, not a form of payment.

A few examples of these gift card scams are:

  • You get a check or refund from someone that is more than you expected, and they ask you to then give them the difference on a gift card (this one will sound familiar to anyone who has ever fallen prey to a translation scammer!)
  • Someone calls from tech support, saying there’s something wrong with your computer and asks for payment
  • The caller says they’re from the IRS or the Social Security Administration and that you have to pay taxes or a fine
  • You receive a message or call purportedly from, or on behalf of, someone you know asking for funds for an emergency or for travel plans (AATIA members have received such messages, supposedly from other AATIA members, but closer scrutiny revealed that the e-mail came from an unknown address and/or had not really been sent by the AATIA member)
  • Someone says you’ve won the lottery, sweepstakes or a prize, but first requests an up-front payment to cover taxes, processing fees or duties

For more information on scams specifically targeting translators/interpreters, see our Scam Job Offers page.