Posted by: patenttranslator | October 24, 2017

Some Translation Agencies Now Try to Install Spying Software on Our Computers

This morning I had two emails from an “LSP” in China in my email folder:

” Hello,

I need translation of a ~30,000 english [sic] word PATENT application PCT/IB/2016/051969: [link to a patent application]      

 This highly technical patent application relates to computer memory protection units, memory management units, and translation look aside buffers. 

Immediate start. 

Deadline for English to Japanese Translation is 12th of November, 2017.
We need to ask the following questions of the translator assigned to that job: 

          Do you have experience translating low-level computer architecture patents?
          Do you have experience translating digital electronic patents?
          Are you familiar with computer memory architecture?
          Are you capable of translating this document accurately? 
          Are you available to complete this translation in time? 

          How much would you charge for this translation?

          Please provide an example of your earlier translation work, in a field as close as possible to this patent application. 

Thanks, 

(Please confirm receipt of this email.)

Judy

——————————————————————————————————–

Project Manager

Xiamen Butterfly House Translation service Co., Ltd”

Right below the email inquiring about my availability for patent translation to Japanese was another email from the same outfit in China about my availability for translating the same patent to Korean:

Hello,

“I need translation of a ~30,000 english [sic] word PATENT application PCT/IB/2016/xxxxx69:

This highly technical patent application relates to computer memory protection units, memory management units, and translation look aside buffers. 

Immediate start. 

Deadline for English to KoreanTranslation [sic] is 12th of November, 2017.        

We need to ask the following questions of the translator assigned to that job: 

          Do you have experience translating low-level computer architecture patents?
          Do you have experience translating digital electronic patents?
          Are you familiar with computer memory architecture?
          Are you capable of translating this document accurately? 
          Are you available to complete this translation in time? 

          How much would you charge for this translation?
          Please provide an example of your earlier translation work, in a field as close as possible to this patent application. 

Thanks, 

(Please confirm receipt of this email.)

Judy

——————————————————————————————————–

Project Manager

Xiamen Butterfly House Translation service Co., Ltd”

Out of curiosity, I tried to go to the website of the Xiamen Butterfly House Translation Service for more information about them …. but fortunately, my anti-virus prevented me from falling into the attack page trap when the following warning was displayed:

“Reported Attack Page!

This web page at v3041164.11123.28la.com.cn has been reported as an attack page and has been blocked based on your security preferences.

Attack pages try to install programs that steal private information, use your computer to attack others, or damage your system.

Some attack pages intentionally distribute harmful software, but many are compromised without the knowledge or permission of their owners.”

Translators, beware!

Even if you are only interested in obtaining more information about a translation intermediary, to use the terminology of one of the frequent commenters on my silly blog, it is quite possible that a shady translation agency just wants you to click on their email to install an attack page to steal your private information, such as information about your clients, rates, and who knows what else.

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Responses

  1. Have you reported this to Translator Scammers? This appears to be a new form of scam visited on hapless translator. I suspect the “agency” is not in China at all, but in Gaza. According to Translator Scammers, 90% of translation scams are produced in Gaza. Thanks for the lovely recording!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. You are welcome! Some “feminists” will probably attack me for daring to post the first Youtube video. I look forward to it.

    It could be from Gaza or from China, I am not sure. I receive constantly resumes of fake translators who pretend to be French or German or Japanese, but are in fact from scammers in Gaza.

    This is the first time that I received a fake offer of work from what may be a fake agency in Gaza (or China, I am not sure).

    No, I have not reported it, but you go ahead if you want to do that.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. You could find the IP address of the incoming mail (this is in the header), various procedures according to your e-mail client software, but looking for “display full header” in help should do the trick. The IP will then tell you where the e-mail did come from (for example see iplocation.net, no scam site).

    The other interesting things in this e-mail are IMO:
    – this LSP did accept from a customer a job consisting of translating a “highly technical” and significant volume patent into multiple difficult languages without having any idea of where they will find the people to do the job. How serious is a burger seller who tries and find salad and meat AFTER they accepted your order? If we were picky we could even compare this rather to a fine cuisine dinner, many more people will do a decent hamburger than produce a decent japanese translation of a 30K technical patent.
    – the level of the questions asked shows better yet the professionalism of the “company”: basically answering to “do you know anything about patents and translation?” is the key to becoming a supplier of theirs. For sure they will sell to their clients their rigorous testing and hiring procedures!

    In the end this is a scam, but a very credible one: they did perfectly summarize the ins and outs and more specifically the utterly arrogant and unprofessional tone of LSPs these days.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I just was asked to register with a translation agency that asked, as a routine question, whether I worked into and out of my languages. This is proof that the agency hasn’t a clue.

    Liked by 1 person

    • It might be possible – in rare cases – to work into two languages, but not more than that, and if I remember, you translate several languages.

      But yes, “project managers” these days seem to be completely clueless.

      Like

  5. Actually, I am not sure they really have a job.

    Anybody can post a link to download a patent from the EPO or WIPO website.
    I think they just want information about my prices and customers, and anything else they can find on my computer.

    “How serious is a burger seller who tries and find salad and meat AFTER they accepted your order?”

    But this is, unfortunately, exactly how the “translation industry” typically works these days.

    Like

  6. Thanks for the warning Steve -a useful reminder!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Maybe it wasn’t even an LSP and they just wanted to infect your machine.

    One clue is that he seems a bit anxious to get a reply–any reply. Some spammers make up an e-mail address and then try to get recipient to reply to confirm that the mailbox actually exists.

    Other con-men have targeted translators, some of them perpetrating scams unrelated to translation. Maybe this is because we are more prone to quickly open and act on e-mails we think may be important.

    A while ago I got an email from an advance fee scammer who found me via ProZ. His message included an US address, presumably to try to look legit, but Google Street View showed it was a deserted road!

    Like

    • I think it probably was an “LSP” because this is a typical format for emails from LSP outfits in places like China.

      But usually they just want to know how much I charge so that they could underbid me.

      This is the first time that somebody tried to put spying software on my computer …. that I know of.

      Like

  8. Would you be interested in how to start ERP project: http://system-erp.net/how-to-start-erp-project

    Like

  9. Here is another scam, I was approached by an agency I had not heard of yesterday who demanded that I not only complete an application form but send them two “reference letters”! What they mean, of course, is they want to see who I work for so they can approach them and undercut my price and/or steal my client. I told them that I would not provide such letters and they wrote something to the effect that they would not work with me in that case. I pointed out that it is easy to forge reference letters but you cannot forge membership of the ITI and ATA as it can be checked by visiting the relevant websites. It is yet another example of the duplicitousness and frankly stupid duplicitousness of these new agencies who think that translations are a commodity to be bought and sold like underwear.

    Like


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