Uber emphasizes privacy stance following exec’s comments

Brittany A. Roston - Nov 19, 2014, 3:50am CST
Uber emphasizes privacy stance following exec’s comments

In case you managed to miss it, one of Uber’s top executives recently made comments about how the company could dox reporters that have been critical of the service, something that quickly spawned harsh comments and ample backlash. Though an apology and clarification were made soon after, users are still raising privacy concerns, and in an apparent effort to quiet the noise comes a new blog post from Uber. It has emphasized its privacy policy, pointing out the bits it feels are relevant, though it seems like a case of too little, too late.

The hoopla started when BuzzFeed posted a feature claiming company executive Emil Michael suggested Uber should consider shelling out $1 million for a team of “opposition researchers” to dox some journalists and seed out what it finds as a sort of revenge against negative press.

The comments were made during a dinner that included a BuzzFeed editor who hadn’t been made aware the event was off the record. According to this editor, Michael reportedly was particularly upset with PandoDaily editor Sarah Lacy, saying that he felt she should be held “personally responsible” for the potential ramifications of her statements.

BuzzFeed was careful to note that such plans hadn’t actually taken place, saying that it had been said as something “that would make sense” for Uber to do. After the commentary went public, Michael emailed Lacy an apology, saying in part:

I was at an event and was venting, but what I said was never intended to describe actions that would ever be undertaken by me or my company toward you or anyone else. I was definitively wrong and I feel terrible about any distress I have caused you. Again, I am sorry.

Following all of this, Uber has posted a statement emphasizing its privacy policy. In it, the company says that it has data security specialists regularly monitoring to ensure rider and driver accounts aren’t accessed without proper reason, among other things, and that disciplinary actions will take place against anyone who does.

VIA: Mashable, BuzzFeed


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