Freelancing gave me a healthy fear of fraud. Here’s how I beat it.

Nov 26, 2018

Something changed for me when I took charge of my career and became a serious freelancer.

As a writer and editor, by trade, I had gotten used to doing work on the side every now and then, like the odd magazine article or editing gig that came along, but I still saw my regular 9-to-5 work as the main way forward for my professional (and fiscal) growth.

One-off jobs were becoming professional relationships and the trickle of paid opportunities was soon a steady flow, and it struck me: while hopping between contracts was draining and unreliable, I could reliably make the same money (or better!) by fully investing myself as an independent.

What happened next was exhilarating. It was a whirlwind. Work was exciting again, because I was in charge. I could work when, where and as much or as little as I wanted, and both my bank account and real life bounced back to life as a result.

What assignments I chased, who I worked for, what I researched and learned about — for all those questions and more, I was the boss.

But as much as I loved being my own CEO, taking over for the finance department was a prompt pain in the ass.

Payday used to be this magical event, with money appearing in my account out of thin air at regular bi-weekly intervals. All the paperwork was done, I didn’t have to go anywhere or do anything, and there were professionals in charge of keeping track of the numbers. Even my end-of-year tax slips, they did those too.

Suddenly, though, getting paid wasn’t so simple anymore.

Fraud: a clear, present (and growing!) danger

With no back-office elves to do it for me, getting money in my account meant I had to send an invoice or make a phone call, wait for cheques in the mail and take them to the bank, or — the worst — awkwardly ask my client “hey, what’s the password to the transfer you sent me?” (No, Gary, no-spaces-all-caps was not obvious.)

And that’s just went things went smoothly.

Some cheques never arrived, others bounced, and I could never count on when an e-transfer would pop into my inbox. Keeping track of who had paid me already and who hadn’t was a constant challenge, and I literally lost sleep worrying I had let something slip through the cracks.

I thought going digital would help ease the burden, but it also amped up my fear. Using online platforms to manage my payments sounded great, but it meant putting personal or financial information — both my clients’ and mine — within reach of hackers or scheming corporations. And the more I learned about payment fraud, the more I worried about whether the money I earned would even make it to my account, and stay there.

Hearing about huge data breaches in the news is one thing, but thinking it could happen to you is another. Target, Home Depot, Equifax — just those three big names have seen a total of nearly 230 million customer accounts compromised in recent years, but I still never thought the business being targeted could one day be me. But I soon learned that fraud is in fact a very real, very common, everyday problem for businesses of any kind that get paid.

The numbers show that, just since 2012, the average number of fraud attempts per month in the U.S. has grown by nearly 400 per cent, according to LexisNexis’ 2018 True Cost of Fraud study.

Retail businesses are getting hit especially hard. Fraud now eats up an unprecedented 1.8 per cent of their revenues, after sharp jump from the previous year. The number of successful fraud attempts they face has also grown significantly, up nearly 30 per cent since the 2017 study.

By this point, I was terrified. Every email transfer now looked like a phishing scam in disguise, and even just the thought of accepting card payments made me shutter. I knew there was more than just money on the line: getting hit with fraud could mean a pile of more costs to clean up the mess — not to mention chargebacks — plus a hit to my business’ reputation, client relationships, and my sanity as a whole.

I thought technology would provide the answer, but what I found there was worrisome too. Surely getting setup with a big name like Apple Pay would keep me safe, but then I learned that Apple Pay sees $6 out of every $100 lost to fraud — compared with 10 cents per $100 for traditional credit card transactions.

Love at first Glance

I was starting to feel like I was doomed to years of lining up at the bank with my week’s worth of cheques, until I found the perfect remedy for my payday headaches.

It started with a free download, a quick account setup, and didn’t cost me a cent in extra hardware.

It was love at first Glance.

You’ve probably heard of Glance because of Glance Pay, the app that’s making a name for itself with fast, easy mobile payments, built-in loyalty rewards, and a wide network of (often delicious) merchants to explore.

What maybe you haven’t heard is that Glance’s flagship payments app also been proving the power of Glance’s game-changing anti-fraud technology.

It’s been nearly two years since Glance Pay launched, and to say its anti-fraud security systems have kept occurrences of fraud down would be, well, a huge understatement. That’s because the number of fraud incidents on the Glance Pay platform in all this time has been (drumroll, please) ZERO!

Freelancers, side hustlers, entrepreneurs and everyone who, like me, needs a smart, easy way to get paid can rest easy knowing they have this Glance technology keeping them safe — and on a platform that fully compliant with PCI DSS, the leading industry security standard.

Glance PayMe requires no separate payment processing and no extra hardware. Even better, the mobile POS platform delivers low fees (just 2.5% in Canada & 2.59% + 10¢ in the U.S.!) and next-business-day deposits!

But don’t just take my word for it. Download Glance PayMe for free for iOS and put an end to your payday headaches, while making a smart investment in your business’ security.

 

 

Geoff, from the Glance Blog Team

Something changed for me when I took charge of my career and became a serious freelancer.

As a writer and editor, by trade, I had gotten used to doing work on the side every now and then, like the odd magazine article or editing gig that came along, but I still saw my regular 9-to-5 work as the main way forward for my professional (and fiscal) growth.

One-off jobs were becoming professional relationships and the trickle of paid opportunities was soon a steady flow, and it struck me: while hopping between contracts was draining and unreliable, I could reliably make the same money (or better!) by fully investing myself as an independent.

What happened next was exhilarating. It was a whirlwind. Work was exciting again, because I was in charge. I could work when, where and as much or as little as I wanted, and both my bank account and real life bounced back to life as a result.

What assignments I chased, who I worked for, what I researched and learned about — for all those questions and more, I was the boss.

But as much as I loved being my own CEO, taking over for the finance department was a prompt pain in the ass.

Payday used to be this magical event, with money appearing in my account out of thin air at regular bi-weekly intervals. All the paperwork was done, I didn’t have to go anywhere or do anything, and there were professionals in charge of keeping track of the numbers. Even my end-of-year tax slips, they did those too.

Suddenly, though, getting paid wasn’t so simple anymore.

Fraud: a clear, present (and growing!) danger

With no back-office elves to do it for me, getting money in my account meant I had to send an invoice or make a phone call, wait for cheques in the mail and take them to the bank, or — the worst — awkwardly ask my client “hey, what’s the password to the transfer you sent me?” (No, Gary, no-spaces-all-caps was not obvious.)

And that’s just went things went smoothly.

Some cheques never arrived, others bounced, and I could never count on when an e-transfer would pop into my inbox. Keeping track of who had paid me already and who hadn’t was a constant challenge, and I literally lost sleep worrying I had let something slip through the cracks.

I thought going digital would help ease the burden, but it also amped up my fear. Using online platforms to manage my payments sounded great, but it meant putting personal or financial information — both my clients’ and mine — within reach of hackers or scheming corporations. And the more I learned about payment fraud, the more I worried about whether the money I earned would even make it to my account, and stay there.

Hearing about huge data breaches in the news is one thing, but thinking it could happen to you is another. Target, Home Depot, Equifax — just those three big names have seen a total of nearly 230 million customer accounts compromised in recent years, but I still never thought the business being targeted could one day be me. But I soon learned that fraud is in fact a very real, very common, everyday problem for businesses of any kind that get paid.

The numbers show that, just since 2012, the average number of fraud attempts per month in the U.S. has grown by nearly 400 per cent, according to LexisNexis’ 2018 True Cost of Fraud study.

Retail businesses are getting hit especially hard. Fraud now eats up an unprecedented 1.8 per cent of their revenues, after sharp jump from the previous year. The number of successful fraud attempts they face has also grown significantly, up nearly 30 per cent since the 2017 study.

By this point, I was terrified. Every email transfer now looked like a phishing scam in disguise, and even just the thought of accepting card payments made me shutter. I knew there was more than just money on the line: getting hit with fraud could mean a pile of more costs to clean up the mess — not to mention chargebacks — plus a hit to my business’ reputation, client relationships, and my sanity as a whole.

I thought technology would provide the answer, but what I found there was worrisome too. Surely getting setup with a big name like Apple Pay would keep me safe, but then I learned that Apple Pay sees $6 out of every $100 lost to fraud — compared with 10 cents per $100 for traditional credit card transactions.

Love at first Glance

I was starting to feel like I was doomed to years of lining up at the bank with my week’s worth of cheques, until I found the perfect remedy for my payday headaches.

It started with a free download, a quick account setup, and didn’t cost me a cent in extra hardware.

It was love at first Glance.

You’ve probably heard of Glance because of Glance Pay, the app that’s making a name for itself with fast, easy mobile payments, built-in loyalty rewards, and a wide network of (often delicious) merchants to explore.

What maybe you haven’t heard is that Glance’s flagship payments app also been proving the power of Glance’s game-changing anti-fraud technology.

It’s been nearly two years since Glance Pay launched, and to say its anti-fraud security systems have kept occurences of fraud down would be, well, a huge understatement. That’s because the number of fraud incidents on the Glance Pay platform in all this time has been (drumroll, please) ZERO!

Freelancers, side hustlers, entrepreneurs and everyone who, like me, needs a smart, easy way to get paid can rest easy knowing they have this Glance technology keeping them safe — and on a platform that fully compliant with PCI DSS, the leading industry security standard.

Glance PayMe requires no separate payment processing and no extra hardware. Even better, the mobile POS platform delivers low fees (just 2.5% in Canada & 2.59% + 10¢ in the U.S.!) and next-business-day deposits!

But don’t just take my word for it. Download Glance PayMe for free for iOS and put an end to your payday headaches, while making a smart investment in your business’ security.

 

 

Geoff, from The Glance Blog Team 

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