Authorities investigate Uber phantom cab rides
US authorities are now looking into how and why British users of Uber have been charged for journeys that they did not take.
The taxi service charges users automatically via card payments for taxi fares, which are charged both on demand on distance travelled. The organisation itself has stated that it has not found any evidence of a security breech and is currently unsure of how these transactions have occurred.
Many users are saying that they have had money withdrawn from their accounts for these phantom trips.
This follows speculation that Uber account user’s credentials have been found for sale on the ‘dark net’. The dark net is a collection of websites which use anonymity tools to hide internet provider addresses, leaving users capable of carrying out criminal activity. Once the information is purchased it enables the buyer to order and pay for rides using whatever information is on file.
One user has stated that “I woke up in London to find it said I had taken a $260 [£170] ride in a limousine in California. Because of the time lag, it had been ordered in the middle of the night here. I didn’t receive the notification until I looked at my phone in the morning.”
This news comes shortly after the company has been thrown into a political battle regarding its growth. Uber has around 14,000 drivers in London which makes it the largest provider of private hire cars in the city. In the UK Uber has around 1 million registered users.
“We take any issue of this nature very seriously and, after investigating, have found no evidence of a breach at Uber. Attempting to access and use Uber accounts fraudulently is illegal and we notify the authorities about such activity.” Commented Jo Bertram, the head of Uber’s business in the UK. He added that “anyone who is charged for a trip they didn’t book or take will get a refund.”