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Community Member

Stalking through Upwork

I have had 2 "clients" show up in my town trying to meet me becuase my location is required on my profile. This site protects the companies but anytime I need help they block me out from contacting the company, they remocve my posts from this community.  I have reached out through support repeatedly and am told I cannot reach anyone. After pursuing a joke of a supervisor contacts me and she can't even keep track of our conversations or appointments but claims she's going to advocate for me. I've reached out through FB and made a copmment on Hayden Brown's Linkedin Profile and no one will addres the saftey concerns, stalking behavior, or threats I have recieved. 


Furthermore, this site is full of scams, it's set up so no one has to pay for the work you did. I have never recieved the support Upwork claims they offer freelancers.  And now I am blocked from contacting anyone at all. I can only talk to bots that tell me to contact support which is what I am trying to do. 


I've been on this site for 5 years and I am appauled.






Community Member

I so far haven't been stalked and threatened. I have only been on Upwork for 3 weeks. However, I had a couple of hackers this month get into my account after sending me a contract, which wasn't a real job, they ended up ghosting me and I had to reset all of my passwords and other identification on outside Upwork accounts to not lose any information. I did request for a refund since I didn't want to accept their fraudulent money. It's been difficult even making a profit from Upwork. 

Get ready.... the hacking and phishing is constant. Upwork doesn't care. I haven't been able to keep a gmail account or have a secure google drive since I joined this site. I've had a computer brought to the black screen of death while on a screen share. I was told by apple directly to never use their time tracker. 

Community Member

I have not been stalked or threatened through Upwork or outside of Upwork as a result of clients I met through Upwork.


A couple of things:


1) Once people start showing up in-person and/or making threats, it's a safety issue and becomes a local law enforcement matter. You can reach out to Upwork in the hopes that they will ban the client, but Upwork--through its registered agent--will respond to criminal subpoenas, court orders, and other lawful governmental requests if you take it that far.


2) Upwork is unlikely to provide you direct access to the client or their information. I know it sounds really weird to hear, but Upwork's warranty disclaimer in its User Agreement says:


"We are not responsible for the quality, safety, or reliability of our Services."

They're speaking specifically about "Services," but that's almost everything via Upwork. When a contract is started between freelancer and client, Upwork is pretty much hands-off at that point, so I encourage you to pursue a local law enforcement approach--especially if people are appearing in your city. That's a huge safety concern.

Community Member

"I have not been stalked or threatened through Upwork or outside of Upwork as a result of clients I met through Upwork."  

That's great for YOU!  #1- you are a man.  #2 its happened to me repeatedly. I've had not one but 2 people show up in my town not to mention what's gone on ON THE SITE.


When I am forced to put my picture and location up for all stranger to see, that is providing my direct information. The practices of this site protect business names. That's great that Upwork claims they are not responsible for saftey concerns. They also claim they don't offer commission only jobs but I've flagged about 20 in the past week. They never accept accountability for anything, there's always an excuse. 


What will Upwork do? Go tell them I told on them and put me in more danger. 

What will the stalker do? Become more provoked, create a new profile under another name and company and continue to stalk and harrass me. They already know where I live. That's how it works with that personality type. 


Call the cops? What good does that do?  Give them a court record with my address.  Provoke them more to encourage their behavior. 


Call to the cops: Hello I need to report someone that showed up to meet me.

Cops: You worked for them?  Did they hurt you? Did they break in? We can't do anything until basically they hurt you. There's nothing illegal about going on vacation wherever you want. 


This site bypasses and concern for their freelancers or manageing their own business at the expense of the freelancer. I have used this site for 5 years.


I've had not one but 2 people show up in my town not to mention what's gone on ON THE SITE.


As Clark said, this is not an Upwork issue, it is a law enforcement issue. If you feel in danger, you need to deal with them, like it or not, or you are on your own. If you are threatened, then that is the only thing that matters now, not Upwork's problems or your problems with clients. What did the two people say when they came to your house?


If you accuse someone of a crime, they are going to be informed. If the stalker is using Upwork, save all the messages, and Upwork will remove them. If it takes 5 times, then it does. You have a role in this issue, and you first need to call the police and then take all of this to Upwork. They will suspend or ban the person if they have evidence.


 I've had stalkers, and unless they break a law, there isn't anything law enforcement can do. Even with a restraining order, there are limitations. It may not sound "fair", but you need to learn to protect yourself. Learn self-defense and martial arts or similar, carry your choice of self-defense tools, learn how to be alert, and have a dog, to help you feel more confident and safe.


Unfortunately, your only solution is to not work online. Every platform functions differently, but all require photos and ID. Any time you post to the'net, you must assume it will be on the 'net as long as the 'net lasts. Stalking from Upwork clients is rare. Even if you feel it's useless, think of the next person. It is crucial to report this activity to both Upwork and the police. You might not see any movement on Upwork's side, but they don't approve of stalking. Law enforcement is limited by law. However, each documentation adds up, and then action can be taken.



Community Manager
Community Manager

Hi Keri,

Thank you for your message. I’m sorry to hear about this experience. We do take this very seriously. I’m able to confirm that your existing support ticket is still open and you can respond with the requested information to aid us in assisting you further.


Community Member

Hello. The "support" is a joke!  I've been trying to contact you all for weeks. Your support reps claims I can't reach anyone but them. After several attempts and insisting I can speak to someone else, I got contacted by someone named Liz who can't keep up with the meetings, the conversation, and doesn't even know what's going on. She refuses to let me speak to anyone else. Without even speaking to me is trying to resolve the issue via email. I would like to speak to an executive about this. The way you all handle your business by blasting my info, having me report everyone and not managing your own buisness only puts me and your freelancers in more danger. Freelancers are the reason this site exists and you all should be doing more to support and protect us but you use us for greedy profit. 


Can an executive art this company give me a call? I've even tried to conact Hayden Brown on Linkedin and I am now blocked from contacting support and only find AI. This is unbelievable. I've used this site for 5 years. 


I've been given a direct threat - using that site is the worst decision you've ever made by the person who showed up in my town. Upwork needs to make some major changes. I cringe when I hear the name of this compnay.

One more thing... anytime i ask you all for support you give me some lame reason why I dont qualify when I follow your rules. Your reps say whatever on the support and constantly contradict themselves to give you all an out. You all need to do so much better than what you are. 

No need to speak with management, it is useless. Read ToS again: you already accepted that Upwork owe nothing to you. Them dont care about your safety at all. Sorry, but as is.

My advice: report stalker to Upwork and block. Never repply, just ignore. He\she will get tired soon and will leave you alone.

Community Member

Reporting and blocking is pointless, they just create a new account under a fake name and company and continue....becuase Upwork does NOTHING to manage their job posters and platform and doesn't even check if the companies or people are legit or real.  True to form- Upwork has done absolutely NOTHING to respond to or address this issue. 

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