Upwork’s Identity Verification Badge

I’ve seen this question asked several times in freelancing groups recently. What’s the identity badge for? Why is Upwork doing this? I did not pay attention to it until I saw this banner on my profile today:

Upwork's Identity Verified Badge
Upwork displays a pop up about the change

It got me wondering, what is it for, is it required and how tedious the process is. Here’s what I found out.

Identity Badge – Is it required?

It does seem rather optional. I’ve been doing freelancing for almost a year now and have active contracts. I’ve also been getting invites for interviews. Given that I still don’t have the identity badge yet, I don’t think it hinders my profile from being seen by potential clients or for my earnings to be influenced somehow.


For how long has this been going?

I thought it was a pretty recent update until I’ve made a search online. It was then I found out that it has been going on for quite a while. I mean, take a look at this post I’ve seen on Reddit, 2 years ago:


A post in Reddit: Why does Upwork require an identity verification video call?
A post in Reddit: Why does Upwork require an identity verification video call?

What is it for?

Come to think of it, the badge’s name says it all. It helps verify your identity. The process help validate if you are who you say you are. It keeps the platforms safe for clients and freelancers.

According to Upwork, only Top rated freelancers in the mean time will receive notifications about it. However, they plan to expand their scope and offer it to everyone in the future.


How is the Identity badge displayed?

Notice the small blue circle with a check mark in white? That’s how clients will know you’ve gone through the Identity verification process.

How the Identification badge is displayed in Upwork
How the Identification badge is displayed in Upwork


What do I need to do to get verified?

These are the two stages of verification:

  • Provide a valid ID

Here are some guidelines from Upwork:

  1. Do not alter the photo in any way – No filters, don’t crop, rotate or adjust color.
  2. Take the photo from above. Your ID needs to be on a flat surface.
  3. All four corners of your ID should show in the photo.
  4. These are the acceptable photo formats: PNG, JPEG, PDF or BMP.
  5. Your name, address (unless your ID do not have address on them) and of course photo, should match what you have on your Upwork profile.
  • Complete a verification (video) call

The call should take less than 10 minutes. Have your government ID ready in case they ask you to show it while on the call. Click the link in the Action required message like below:

Action required
Reminder from Upwork: Make sure your internet connection is stable and can support the video call.


What if you fail the verification process?

If you fail the verification process, you won’t get the badge. You won’t be able to submit proposals or change your profile photo until successful verification.


I hope this article helps alleviate any concerns, worry you have over this topic. Have you tried to get yourself verified? How was your experience? Let us know in the comments section below.

2 thoughts on “Upwork’s Identity Verification Badge”

  1. I do this very successfully. You need a very good personal network, most likely of people that have been impressed with your work at other jobs. Then the best way is to wait for a good moment. Get yourself out there, before going full time. Do contract/consulting outside your main job for awhile if possible. Then, best case scenario is you quit your main job and can retain them as a client…. THAT is the ideal way to get get started and keep expectations in check.

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