Uber used secret software to escape control
Taxi company Uber used to have a secret computer program to log out systems and keep information hidden from authorities when raided by inspectors. This is what press agency Bloomberg learned from some sources. Uber is said to have used it in Brussels, Paris, Amsterdam, Montreal and Hong Kong.
Locked from San Fransisco
Ripley, as the project was called, made Uber employees use a special telephone number to call the headquarters in San Fransisco from where all computers were locked and made inaccessible. Pass words and all kind of other data on smartphones, laptops and computers were subsequently changed.
It is not the first time Uber is under fire. Last year the personal data of 57 million people was hacked and the company paid the hackers to keep it quiet.
Uber also had a secret program – Greyball – to remain ‘unseen’ for authorities. It allowed the company to get going in cities where it was not permitted. A software package called ‘Hell’ was used to spy on drivers of their competitor Lyft and with the appropriately called ‘God View’ the company could follow the behaviour of journalists, celebrities and politicians.
The taxi company even had a worse image, being accused of sexual intimidation on the shop floor. Uber is also charged by Google’s sister company Waymo for stealing technology meant for autonomous cars.