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Uber Agrees To 20 Years Of Privacy Audits In Settlement Deal With The US Government


How often do you use Uber? Do you like their services? Do you feel measures should be put in place to safeguard the privacy of user’s data from hackers and other fraudsters out there? If all the answers to these question I asked are “Yes” then I bring to you a heart-warming news as the company has agreed to protect the data of their users and are making plans to strengthen the privacy and data security since the complaint made by the government in order to protect their citizen from the unknowns and provide for them a safe and comfortable ride to their various destinations as ease.

The company finally agreed to protect user data and Audit use of riders information in order to settle a complaint from the Federal Government that customers were deceived, The Federal Trade Commission, in a complaint laid on Tuesday suggested that Uber failed to ensure that information regarding rider trips were not fully secure and the company neglected proper monitoring of their employees access to information.

This adds to the list of missteps for the San-Francisco based company, currently facing federal investigation for allegedly using a fraudulent app to block city inspectors from monitoring its services. Obviously Uber misinterpreted how well it dispenses its services regarding its employees and customer’s information security. The Federal Trade Commission’s acting chairman Maureen Ohlhausen said in a statement “ this case shows that even if you’re a fast growing company, you can’t leave consumers behind: you must honor your privacy and security promises” she said.

Uber reported that the Allegations date back to 2014 before the government complaint, it had made provisions for safeguard to protect data. Since then, it has strengthened privacy and data security and promises to invest in security programs” the company said. But the FTC said in its complaint report that after news reports on Uber employees inappropriately accessing customer data, the company Issued a statement in November 2014 that it had a strict policy prohibiting its employees from viewing the data except for legitimate business purpose.

The company also promised that employee access would be closely monitored in the future. Failingly, Uber stopped using a monitoring system less than a year following its promises and for nine months rarely monitored access to customers to both customers and drivers information. Another claim on their part was that they securely store data in databases, but an intruder gained access to driver date in May of 2014, including 100,000 names and driver licence numbers, the complaint said. “The FTC alleges that Uber did not take reasonable, low cost measures that could have helped the company prevent the breach” the FTC said.

To settle the complaint, Uber technologies Inc. agreed to put a program in place to protect privacy of customers and also stop misinterpreting how well it monitors access to customers information and to stop misinterpreting how well it secures data. It also, must do an audit every two years for the next two decades to make sure the privacy program remains in place.

The settlement decision comes in the world’s largest ride- hailing company’s attempt to recover from series of costly scandals and blunders this year which has damaged the company’s reputation. The company says it has increased the size of its human resources department and is working on changing its habits to ensure customers get maximum satisfaction from its services both internal and external.

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