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legitimate, unique profile photos may appear on many LinkedIn pages

Community Guru

Community Forum members are often asked by new contractors to review their profile pages, sometimes due to difficulties newbies are having in getting their pages approved.


When something doesn't feel right about a newcomer's page, we might use the Google image search tool to check out their profile photo.


I recently did this with a new contractor's photo, and according to the first page of results using the Google Image Search tool, the same photo appeared on numerous different LinkedIn pages, each page with a different person's name.


If the tool had linked to multiple Upwork profile pages, I would have been correct in assuming that the same photo had been used by multiple contractors.


Because only one contractor's photo appears on each Upwork profile page.


But when I looked more closely at the LinkedIn results, I saw that only one of these pages (among multiple result pages shown) actually featured the photo in question as the photo of a LinkedIn user.


The other pages apparently LINKED TO this primary user's page, and did so in a way that included a small thumbnail photo of that user in a sidebar showing associates.


So... what looked at first like a case of a stolen photo, was really only a case of LinkedIn's interconnectedness.


Only one person was using that photo.


So... using the Google Image Search tool to identify re-used or stolen photos requires some finesse, and finding a photo that "appears on" multiple profile pages with multiple names does NOT necessarily mean that the photo is stolen or fake.

Community Guru

You are right. One has to dig a little further.

Community Guru

Yes, you have to click through to see the actual profile and then find the profile that matches the pic.


But, he changed his profile image to a different image for another LinkedIN account, so I still think the account is fake.

re: "he changed his profile image"


I know... I have no argument with you about a specific incident that led me to write my original post. I actually saw both images and did similar searches on both of them.


So I'm not referencing a particular case. I'm just making a general observation about something I learned.