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abbott-larry
Community Member

Is it required to upload a scan of your drivers license or ID

Just recently decided to give upwork a shot. I was going throught the signup and profile process, clicked "next" and landed on a page asking me to send a scan of my drivers license. I really don’t want to do that. Is it required? Is there any way around it?

 

I saw that someone mentioned verification by phone. I’d much rather do that than put a copy of my drivers license in the hands of people I don’t know. Or send it to anyone, anywhere, via email or upload. If phone verification is an option, how do I go about it?

 

Thanks,

Larry A

56 REPLIES 56
kochubei_valeria
Community Manager
Community Manager

Hi Larry,

 

Some jobs have a location requirement and in order to view and be able to apply for those jobs, you'll need to confirm your location by submitting your ID. Rest assured that your private information is stored safely. Check out this post for more information.

~ Valeria
Upwork
gerlachtiff
Community Member

Hi, Larry,

 

I was just wondering the same thing.  Did you ever receive a response to this question?  I do not feel comfortable uploading my identification.  I believe there are other ways to verify my identity.  Let me know what you found out.

 

Thank you,

Tiffany

Hi Tiffany,

 

Nope. Never received an answer to that question. And I still haven’t given them a copy of my license. 

 

Thanks!

Larry


@Larry A wrote:

1.) Nope. Never received an answer to that question.

2.) And I still haven’t given them a copy of my license. 



1.) Yes, you did.

2.) How has that been working out for you in terms of contracts won and money earned?

 

 

Seriously, almighty "Guru". Yoda quotes? How approproiatley geeky. 

 

Anyway, asked but not really answered… 

 Is there any way around it?

Not answered. 

 

I saw that someone mentioned verification by phone.

Not addressed. Maybe that used to be the xase, but now isn’t? Anway, question avoided, not really answered.

 

And secure? Yeah, like you guys are hack-proof. So was Target, Home Depot, countless banks and so many others. No thanks. I’ll find work elsewhere. 


Larry A wrote: No thanks. I’ll find work elsewhere. 

 OK. Problem solved, then.

 

ktatum
Community Member

Y'all are doing a terrible job at cutomer service and etyhos.  Give em hell Larry!

Larry A wrote: No thanks. I’ll find work elsewhere. 

 OK. Problem solved, then.



aaaaannd question avoided again.

I’m surprised by the rudeness of the customer service representative.

then what the final solution of our I.D.

I don't want to show my I.D.

Thank you for your question, Sarfaraz.

 

As part of our Terms of Service, we reserve the right to ask any Upwork user to verify their identity at any time. We do this because it is a critical part of maintaining a trusted online global workplace and helps to keep Upwork secure and fraud-free. Submitting a valid government-issued ID is a part of this process. Rest Assured that access to the information you provide during identity verification is handled exclusively by Upwork agents who have passed strict background checks and our secure, third-party vendor’s automated checks.

 

Thank you!

~ Bojan
Upwork

Ummmm.. you don't need a copy of my Drivers license or any other ID to confirm my location.. Why can't you take a credit card without charging it and just validate the address? Heck, charge a nominal fee. You can't get a CC in another country without haveing a residence there (at least not easily). Or why don't you accept utility bills with name and address? I can very easily upload a fake drivers license and use the same fake name on my account.. there is really zerro logic behind this requirement .. you probably lost a huge amount of customers, including myself.. but go on and continue preaching what your company tells you.. instead of acknowleging the crappy policy and just stating that.. 

I was turned off by this too. I used to use upwork years ago back when it was called Odesk.. not liking this restriction

aocumen
Community Manager
Community Manager

Hi Shawn,

We routinely ask freelancers and clients to verify their identities to help protect our community and ensure that Upwork stays safe and secure. This is covered by the Upwork Terms of ServiceWe do this because it is a critical part of maintaining a trusted online global workplace and keeping Upwork safe and fraud-free.

 

The information you provide for ID verification is governed by our Privacy Policy and sent to us and our third-party partners using SSL—the same secure encryption that websites use to transmit credit card numbers. Our third-party partners handle this info and the storage of your government ID according to our Privacy Policy, which describes how we protect your information.

 

Thanks for sharing your thoughts with us about the verification process.


~ Avery
Upwork

You do realize nothing is secure and the reason phone verification isn’t good enough right? Well let me point it out I could name 20 sites of the top of my head that have phone numbers just for you to use to verify a phone number

It looks a little bit weird, that website requests ID just to apply for a potential job. Smiley Indifferent  ID, passport etc contain enough information to stole identity. Definitily, they can identify location easely over the phone. What is the reason to request so many documnets?????

aocumen
Community Manager
Community Manager

Hi Tanya, 

 

For jobs with a U.S.-location requirement, freelancers who apply for these jobs are requested to do a one-time location verification. If you are uncomfortable providing your information, you have the option of applying to other jobs that do not have this requirement. 


~ Avery
Upwork


@Avery O wrote:

If you are uncomfortable providing your information, you have the option of applying to other jobs that do not have this requirement. 


@Avery, this isn't entirely true. I "did" provide my ID to them, for some reason they weren't able to verify, and so they opted to put my account on "hold" (instead of simply leaving it unverified) disallowing me from applying to ANY jobs. Then they asked me for MORE personal data and documents. I'm now regretting uploading my ID in the first place.

 

So perhaps what you say is true that you can apply to other jobs if you NEVER give them your ID in the first place.

 

I guess the upcoming IPO is giving them pressure to prove that they actually have the number of users they've been claiming.

I think it's more that the upcoming IPO is putting pressure on Upwork to verify that users are, in fact, who and where they say they are.  There has always been a problem with "fake freelancers" and more recently freelancers who sell or rent their profiles to others.

Gambling sites are extremely strick about users who gamble in certain states. They run a verification on your location through the website. Some of these are state government websites. No license needed. Just a verification that you reside in a specific state or country.

They're based in the US which is the most id-paranoid country in the world. Even Soviet Russia wasn't this much "papers, please!!" everywhere you turned.

It's a US-thing. The US has gotten so ID-paranoid lately, it's worse than Soviet Russia ever was with the "papers, please!!" everywhere you turn nowadays. In all fairness I've gotten it more and more ever since I decided to "change" to my formerly-married name because I got arressted twice and called an "identity thief" and a "liar" with just Kennedy on everything, the name I was born with and had for the first 30 years of my life until I married Sztyblewski back there in London. I'm gradually changing everything over to just Sztyblewski sort of "in retrospect" because of that. Strangely enough (or maybe not) the world is treating me slightly better as Mrs Sztyblewski than it did as Miss Kennedy so I'm gradually changing everything over but these things take time, months even years in some of the countries I'm a citizen of and have had ID documents in. (Canada for instance: Quebec flat-out refused. I had to get Government of Canada-level IDs and go "over their heads" and that took like a year and a half because Canadian federal ID documents are expensive. $75 for the Citizenship Card and then now $260 for the Passport!?!?!)

 

Anyway. Remember that even if you are outside the USA, in Upwork you are still dealing with an "American" company. And so. "Papers, please!!!"

They don't even need to identify location over the phone. They can automatically identify it. This is 2020 and the world is advancing and it is just so sad and kind of disappointing to see that a platform full of so many opportunities and potential is lacking at so many levels and i am not just saying anything, i have worked on different freelancing platforms too and the only reason i joined Upwork was to expand my services on this platform... so, what i am saying is based off of pure experience. There are a couple of ways through which they can get location without collecting Government ID's and all the rest of the documents. First one is HTML Geo-location API which requires user’s approval when a website requests the location. The location is quite precise because its derived from GPS, WiFi & Cell triangulation. Even if your device doesn’t have GPS, but a GPS enabled device was connected through the same WiFi at some point, the location can be correlated. The other one is IP address to location lookup which does not require user’s consent. You can use a database or an API to lookup the approximate location from the user’s IP address. These guys can literally Auto set our locations and lock them and change them only when we travel somewhere, that too automatically.

Dear Petra, 

Am I correct in understanding you work for Upwork? If so, it seems you'd be helping and encouraging potential writers/clients to your site. Perhaps it's unintentional, but the tone of your reply appears terribly uncompassionate and downright rude. 

The concern regarding the ID requirement is legitimate and shared by many. Your response, however unintentional, gives Upwork a bad image. If you care so little about how you answer a legitimate question, what will the company's response be to more significant concerns at a later date? 

Please take this into consideration in future correspondence. I hope you have much success with those who are willing to put their trust in the company! 

Hi Robyn, 


I would like to clarify that Community moderators for Upwork, and other Upwork employees have the Upwork badge after their profile names, which you can see below for your reference. 

Avery O.png

 

Please know that the team understands users concerns about identity verification. Honestly, we wish this step was not needed. But unfortunately there are sometimes fraudulent profiles on Upwork and we want to better ensure our marketplace is a secure place for upstanding freelancers and clients to connect and work together. This is to help protect all our users and ensure that Upwork is a trusted and safe environment.


~ Avery
Upwork
jojomo
Community Member

I understand your concern but we've all had to do it guys. I've never had an issue and I've been with Upwork since 2013.

 

I don't think there's any other way around it.

 

 

Glad it’s working for you, so far. It’s not for me, though.


@Larry A wrote:

Glad it’s working for you, so far. It’s not for me, though.


 ______________________

 

Larry, before getting ornery before you even start, accept that this is part of Upwork's terms of service, so if you want to work from the platform, then just go with the flow and give them whatever proof of identity they ask you to give. Your details will be safe.

Thats not a very reasonable response. If someone is concerned about identity theft/security,  then " just go with the flow and give them whatever proof of identity they ask you to give" is not at all reassuring, nor is it prudent with the insecurity of many computer apps/platforms today. You may trust Upwork, but asking someone else to blindly do what the platform asks seems naive.


Mark M wrote:

Thats not a very reasonable response. If someone is concerned about identity theft/security,  then " just go with the flow and give them whatever proof of identity they ask you to give" is not at all reassuring, nor is it prudent with the insecurity of many computer apps/platforms today. You may trust Upwork, but asking someone else to blindly do what the platform asks seems naive.


It is quite simple. If you decide not to, you can't work here.

That is as valid a choice as any other, but bottom line is that sooner or later everyone will be identity verified and those who opt not to partake for their own reasons opt not to continue being here.

I strongly agree with Mark here as Identity Theft is a real thing. You guys can say that it's a safe platform and all our data is safe with you but all it takes is a little more passionate and determined hacker to change all the claims that you guys have been making and i agree with all the people who are not willing to share their personal details purely because they don't know the people behind the screens receiving all this information. I have seen so many video call interviews of upwork on Youtube and the most interesting part in all of them was that the interviewer doesn't even switches on his camera which makes the entire scenario even weirder because it makes the entire thing to look like that you want us to blindly trust you, provide you with all our data, be on a video call with you for the interview but when it comes to you guys you hide behind your screens and i have no issue with that i understand if you guys do this purely out of suspicion that you don't personally know the seller than why switch the camera on and reveal yourself but you should think about the interviewee that way too.

Thank you. This is something I find extremely worrying. To be interviewed by a company that is fine with hiding its identity but has no problem demanding personal documents for identity verification is the worst paradox. Do they want to be trusted or not? They prey on the desperation of freelancers to make money, especially from people in developing countries who will do anything to make a quid, including surrendering their personal information without a second thought. They keep making their buyer community exclusive with more and more plans that exclude new and upcoming freelancers. Now their job feed is littered with Telegram and WhatsApp scam posts and nothing is done about it. For all our IDs submitted, connects bought, we still have to deal with poor scammers filling our feeds with junk.

Larry, what is your concern about providing your ID? Is it the license #? Truly asking out of curiosity. 

It would be for me. Filing your taxes now require a copy of the drivers license, so there would be a direct connection if someone, somehow, were find a driver license number and trace it to a SS#, and who knows what other ID theft. I have a business ID # I would glady send you.

My concern is that no institution is ever secure, and many institutions have incentives (market-based and legal) to store data rather than destroy it. The best policy is to refrain from putting identity information out there in the first place.  Upwork should have a system that destroys the data in a verifiable way once the user's identity is confirmed. If this verification is even necessary. I'd like to see details about the federal/state requirements demanding this collection.


@Ryan M wrote:

My concern is that no institution is ever secure, and many institutions have incentives (market-based and legal) to store data rather than destroy it. The best policy is to refrain from putting identity information out there in the first place.  Upwork should have a system that destroys the data in a verifiable way once the user's identity is confirmed. If this verification is even necessary. I'd like to see details about the federal/state requirements demanding this collection.


You may have a point about deleting data once used. As explained, there is no federal or state requirement involved. This is not employment. The policy is Upwork's implementation of a market-based demand.

re: "I'd like to see details about the federal/state requirements demanding this collection."

 

Very little of what Upwork does is required or "demanded" by any government body... federal, state or otherwise.

 

There are many websites where you can create user accounts and start posting comments within a few seconds, with no identification at all. That is perfectly legal.


There are other websites that require interviews, background checks, tests, etc. Compared to some places, Upwork is relatively EASY to get registered on AS A FREELANCER. (Check out Toptal or codingninjas.co for examples of places where it is signiicantly more difficult to become a freelancer.)

 

Either way, it is up to the individual websites to set their policies and requirements. It's not a government matter.

phil_pat
Community Member

Thank's Joelle O your answer is actually helpful. I don't understand all these rude people. I know I didn't post the original question, but I wanted to know the answer. I too am new to Upwork. I appreciate the Upwork employees saying that it was safe, but that's their job. I really wanted to hear it from another freelancer. I wanted to know if people had submitted their ID's without being scammed. Thanks again. 

bfitz70
Community Member

Sorry Joelle, but that's the mentality that gets you in trouble.. 'we've all had to do it. I never had an issue' .. the problem is that you won't know when upwork gets hacked, and when they do, the hackers will sell your ID on the black market. I'd much rather enter my credit card, have them verify my address and then delete my CC info so there'is nothing to be stolen. Every major company on the internet has been hacked and will continue to get hacked on a regular basis. It's all about minimizing your Personal Identifiable Informaiton exposure on the internet and this process of requesting an ID is completely absurd. Talk about Idnentity Theft, why don't you just give the upwork employees the keys to your house and let them come over for a cup of coffee? common sense says no.

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