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Europe's Privacy Regulators Are Ganging Up on Uber
30 November 2017, 01:14 | Rufus Hill
Uber reveals 2.7 million British users hit by data breach
Uber Technologies Inc has informed Britain's data protection regulator that about 2.7 million user accounts - representing the vast majority of people using the ride-hailing service in the country - were affected by a 2016 data breach. "Nevertheless, the nature of the information now acknowledged to have been compromised, together with the allegation that the company concealed the breach without notifying affected drivers and consumers, and prior privacy concerns at Uber, makes this a serious incident that merits further scrutiny".
The breach saw details of 57 million accounts compromised, and Uber has been heavily criticised for not admitting sooner that its systems had been hacked, and for paying off those responsible. It left their names, email addresses, and mobile phone numbers exposed.
Responding to the latest news, a spokesman for the ICO said: "As part of our investigation we are still waiting for technical reports which should give full confirmation of the figures and the type of personal data that has been compromised".
"Uber's conduct has been truly stunning".
The complaint also noted that "Uber is aware of its responsibilities to provide notice of data security breaches", citing the fact that, in 2016, "the New York Attorney General fined Uber for failing to notify drivers and that office about a data breach that occurred in 2014".
Ferguson announced the state's lawsuit hours after developments in a California court case revealed that federal prosecutors are investigating allegations that Uber deployed an espionage team to plunder trade secrets from its rivals. "Consumers expect and deserve protection from disclosure of their personal information".
According to The Chicago Tribune, Uber disclosed the data breach last week and said the company paid out $100,000 in an effort to silence hackers from exposing the breach to the public. Specifically, he is seeking civil penalties of up to $2,000 per violation-the maximum amount allowed under Washington's revised data breach law.
Similarly, the UK's Minister of State for Digital, Matt Hancock, said, "The Government expects Uber to respond fully to the incident with the urgency it demands and to provide the appropriate support to its customers and drivers in the United Kingdom".
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