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September 8, 2017

Uber is under federal investigation for spying on Lyft drivers

by John_A

Uber’s been in the headlines for the worst of reasons this year, and the bad news keeps on coming. Now, it looks like Uber is involved in yet another federal investigation. Authorities from the FBI’s New York office are looking into whether Uber’s Hell software illegally interfered with the operations of its competitor, Lyft.

We’ve previously covered the computer program, which Uber secretly ran for two years. It used a vulnerability in Lyft’s systems to spy on the company’s drivers from 2014 to early 2016. They used the data to figure out which of their own drivers “double apped,” meaning drove for both Lyft and Uber, and then tried to entice those drivers to work only for Uber. The key for investigators is whether the Hell software program actually consisted of unauthorized access to a computer. An Uber spokesman told The Wall Street Journal that the company is cooperating with the investigation.

It’s hard to fully describe the laundry list of woes Uber has faced over the past year, many of which were the result of the company’s own toxic culture. They’re currently the subject of multiple federal investigations, including an accusation of foreign bribery, not to mention lawsuits, including one over self-driving tech with Alphabet, Google’s parent company. At the end of August, Uber finally announced Dara Khosrowshahi as its replacement for embattled former CEO Travis Kalanick; he clearly has his work cut out for him.

Source: The Wall Street Journal

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