Uber Postmates gig worker scamming

February 2021
Updated: December 2021

An in-depth report by The Markup reveals that hundreds of Postmates riders have been scammed over the last year, resulting in significant loss of earnings. While the problem is well-known, it appears Postmates is doing little to protect its riders from bad actors, or to support them when scams occur.

As Elizabeth Watkins of Princeton University’s Center for Information Technology Policy told The Markup, 'In regular employment arrangements, there is a company culture and there are always people you can talk to. One word for that is social transparency ... In gig work, they don’t have this—it’s called digital isolation.'

Postmates says it has reimbursed some riders with lost earnings in the wake of The Markup report.

Uber is estimated to have over 500,000 riders on its books in the US and other markets. The company was acquired by Uber in December 2020.

Operator: Uber/Postmates

Developer: Uber/Postmates
Country: USA

Sector: Transport/logistics

Purpose: Manage employees

Technology: Workforce management system

Issue: Security; Employment - pay
Opacity: Complaints/appeals