An Egyptian woman in Malta has warned against sharing private addresses with food couriers after she was allegedly sexually harassed by a delivery man who saved her number.
“Ladies that are using food and other delivery services. A small warning – don’t give them your actual work address or home address, give them an address that is a bit far from you – a public landmark or even a shop. Also, make sure to leave once you see them leave,” Fatima* said.
She explained that she orders food to her house and workplace from a popular delivery company often. In January, an unknown number began flooding her phone with inappropriate messages and unsolicited calls.
A man who eventually divulged that he had delivered her food earlier that month began messaging and calling Fatima every two days. He would ask to be her friend and demand a reply when his pleas were ignored.
This went on for a month. The situation escalated when she was sent an X-rated rated video.
“I’ve been harassed by this courier for a while. When he sent a video of a naked woman, I freaked out, reported him, and blocked him. I managed to retrieve the messages and sent them to authorities and the company,” Fatima said.
However, Fatima still didn’t feel safe knowing that he knew where she lived. Her father eventually intervened and confronted the delivery worker on the phone, demanding that he leaves his daughter alone.
“The fact that this guy knows my face, my home address, my work address and my phone number when I don’t know even know who he is scaring me. You never know what people are capable of,” she explained.
Since the incident, Fatima approached Appoġġ with a report of cyber harassment as well as the company involved. The courier company said that an investigation has been opened.
“Now I make sure to pick up food in a public place and keep a log of all couriers’ numbers. The company involved have told me that they’re dealing with this particular driver. I’m grateful but I’m still wary. I try not to walk around much alone right now, either my colleagues or one of my bosses drive me back from work in the evening.”
The food courier company told Lovin Malta that the incident was in breach of their contractual obligations and the appropriate action was taken.
“Our courier-partners are aware that they are strictly not allowed to save any customers’ contact numbers nor contact them after the provision of service with any other motives. All reports regarding any incidents are actioned immediately,” a spokesperson said.
*Names have been changed for the sake of anonymity
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