Stolen CVs, IT Security, Continuing Professional Development and More!
in this edition of our newsletter, we're focussing on security. The breakneck speed of development in the Internet means we face new risks and scams every day, and the fraudsters even have translators in their sights. Our first article describes how you can protect yourself effectively against their attacks.
Here are our current topics at a glance:
- Stolen CVs, stolen identity: how can translators protect themselves?
- Guidelines: IT security
- Across function: Previewing the source and target text
- Further education: Simple quality assurance with the Across Translator Edition
Have fun reading our newsletter!
Stolen CVs, stolen identity: how can translators protect themselves?
At oneword, we receive a multitude of applications every day from interested, qualified translators throughout the world. They come in by e-mail, telephone or in the traditional manner, by letter. We're happy to be contacted by anyone who's interested in a long-term working relationship with us, and we read every application with the greatest care. Sadly, we're finding an increasing number of fraudsters, or scammers, in these applications.
Fraudsters in the translation industry – does that really happen?
Too right it does! The translators we meet at events are often really surprised when we tell them about some of our more nightmarish experiences with fraudsters. If a LSP or customer gets into the clutches of a fraudster, it's clear that a great deal of damage can be caused very quickly. And even freelancers can fall victim to these scammers, because other people then benefit from their success.
Stolen CVs are the most commonly used type of fraudulent application we encounter. Scammers download the CVs of unsuspecting translators and simply change the name and contact details. They then send the doctored document off to a host of potential customers, in the hope that one of them will fall for their cunning trick. And it's not only CVs that are potential targets, diplomas and certificates that have been tampered with are among some of the documents to have landed on the desk of our Translation Partner Manager, Nicole. So, be careful!
Scammers are particularly fond of harvesting CVs, certificates and other documents from translator platforms such as ProZ and Translators Café, or even from the translator's own website, in fact anywhere the documents have been uploaded. Once a CV is in a scammer's hands, it's almost impossible to get it back again. The only thing a translator can do then is damage limitation.
Simple ways to protect yourself!
Since we've noticed a dramatic increase in the number of stolen CVs, we'd like to give you a couple of simple but effective tips on how to protect your documents (and that means your identity as well) from misuse.
- Don't upload your CV to public platforms
- Don't send your CV out as a editable file (Word etc.): use PDF instead
- Mark your CV with a watermark
- Have a clear idea of the LSPs you're sending your CV to, to ensure that they're not simply fishing for your information (check the telephone numbers, address and website)
- Google yourself, and see if your data pops up on websites you don't recognise
- Find out about what scams are currently being identified in the language industry (for example, on Translator Scammers Directory, Translator scam alert reports or in the Translations Scams article published by the ATA )
Guidelines: IT security
To ensure all your processes run smoothly, it's essential you protect your computer, and update these safeguards regularly. Using the Internet carefully, and with adequate expertise, is already a good way of avoiding many problems. This guideline gives an overview of the most important points.
1. Antivirus + firewall
Any computer that is connected to the Internet must have an up-to-date anti-virus and firewall program. It doesn't really matter which program you use, but we do recommend you select products from well-established providers, such as Avira, Kaspersky, McAfee. When you're choosing the product, make sure that the program has both anti-virus functionality and a firewall.
You should regularly install updates for your operating system and the application programs (SDL Trados Studio, MS Office, browser, etc.). In most cases, these updates not only include new program functions and improvements, but can also resolve known gaps in security.
Be very suspicious when you open e-mails and their attachments. When you open an e-mail or its attachment, remember to check:
- Do you know the sender or their domain (the text after the @, for example, @oneword.de)?
- If the e-mail address consists of randomly selected characters and numbers, don't open it!
- If the e-mail's subject and text bear no resemblance to each other, either delete the e-mail or move it to your spam folder
- Never open executable files (for example, with .exe or .bat file extensions)
- Only open images (for example, .jpg, .gif or .png files) or videos (for example .mp4, .mkv or .mpeg files) if you're expecting these types of tiles, and you know who is sending them
- Have a close look at links (http:// and https://). Don't open them if they look like they're going to take you to a dodgy website
Passwords should be at least 8 characters long, and should include a combination of upper case and lower case letters, numbers and special characters. Also, make sure your passwords aren't "readable". An example of a good password would be "x3H9*7Z!", but a bad one would be "P3aS1wArD!". Nowadays, there are many password manager programmes that you can use to generate and store passwords of any length and complexity.
Losing your data is not just something that happens when your computer crashes. An increasing number of trojans are lurking out there, ready to encrypt the data on your hard disk and prevent you from accessing it. These programs are commonly known as ransomware. If you fall victim to one of these trojans, you'll be requested to pay a certain amount of money to release (decrypt) your data. The important thing here is: never give in to this request. At the end of the day, you'll lose both your data and your money. In many cases, security authorities have already developed tools that can decrypt your data again. However, this may take a while. A cheaper backup solution is an external USB hard disk. And this hard disk should only be connected/switched on when you're actually making a backup.
Across function: Previewing the source and target text
You can use the "Preview Source and target text" function in crossDesk to preview the document you're currently editing, or see what the final, translated target text would look after you've translated a segment, in realtime. This function is especially useful for Microsoft Office formats.
This is how you can display the source or target text:
open the file you want to translate in crossDesk. You can then already click on the "Source Preview" icon to display the preview without changes.
Once you've translated a segment in crossDesk (in the example, the term "spelling"), click on the "Target Preview" icon to view the changes immediately in the preview of the target text.
You can use this function, for example, to check where the newly translated segment actually appears in the target text, whether the length of the translation fits into the layout, and where you can set page breaks, etc.
Further education: Simple quality assurance with the Across Translator Edition
Webinar: Across Insights: by translators for translators - simple quality assurance with the Across Translator Edition: Tips, tricks and important functions for everything about QM criteria
11.07.2018, 17:00 to 18:00
In July, this free webinar from the BDÜ (German Federal Association of Interpreters and Translators) will show you the extensive quality assurance features in crossDesk, in the Across Translator Edition, and explain the associated settings.
The webinar lasts one hour. If you don't have time on the actual day of the webinar, you can still register for it. You'll then be sent it as a recording.
Don't hesitate to contact us at any time if you would like to send us any queries, comments or suggestions about our newsletter and the topics in it: you can e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We look forward to receiving your feedback!
Your oneword team