Home Technology Uber wants to record your conversations during your ride

Uber wants to record your conversations during your ride

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If you thought the fact that Uber can already track your rides and routes wasn’t already creepy, well things are about to get worse – but it’s for your benefit. While admittedly a lot of the surveillance that Uber does is for your safety and to ensure the trustworthiness of their system, this new update is a little creepy.

The Washington Post has revealed a report that was confirmed by the company itself that Uber is planning to launch a feature where it will audio record rides to ensure both driver and passenger safety. The idea behind this update comes after many complaints of abuse by either drivers or passengers and is seen a as way for Uber to more proactively combat this, though at the same time will easily be seen by many as a massive invasion of privacy and one which is no doubt bound to cause a variety of privacy issues.

Thankfully though, it won’t be Uber listening in on your conversations (at least that’s what they claim) and rather recordings will be saved on your device (though you will need to authorise the app to access your microphone) and only sent through to the company should you request it, which will allow them to obviously investigate it further or forward to the necessary authorities. Neither the driver or passenger though will be able to listen to these recordings though. These recordings will also only be stored for a period before they are automatically deleted and will require users to have space available on their device as well.

According to Reuters the feature has been trialled in Mexico and Brazil and will be making its way to the US soon. There are no plans to take it elsewhere just yet, especially Europe which takes privacy on these matters seriously. Hopefully, it won’t make its way our shores either though undoubtedly it could be a market that needs it. I admire Uber’s willingness to ensure the safety of its users, but I don’t feel comfortable have recordings of conversations which I can’t access.

Last Updated: November 21, 2019

7 Comments

  1. Admiral Chief

    November 21, 2019 at 13:40

    I wonder what deep, dark mutterings Craig has while traversing paid for transport modules

    Reply

  2. HvR

    November 21, 2019 at 14:54

    Do not really see why people see this as creepy; hell everybody has been calling for the recording of civil servants performing their duties this is a hell of a lot less invasive.

    Do not see the difference between this and say voice or action recordings during any other form of service delivery in the tech world.

    Reply

  3. Son of Banana Jim

    November 21, 2019 at 15:32

    I’ve heard some horror stories from my uber drivers about the people they pick up and transport, so I honestly don’t have a problem with this. If it protects the drivers and the riders, then so be it.

    Reply

    • HvR

      November 21, 2019 at 15:32

      This have me wondering WTF are people doing in Ubers?

      All the conversations I had in ubers were:
      “Hi ”
      “Hello sir, you had a good evening?”
      “Yeah thanks”
      “You going to …”
      :”Yeah”

      “Over there thanks”
      “Thanks for the ride have a good evening/morning”
      “Thank you”

      Reply

      • Son of Banana Jim

        November 21, 2019 at 16:23

        <20 to 30 minutes of silence>

        Yeah, I generally ask them about how their day has been, and what made them drive for uber etc. One driver even gave me great advice in that you shouldn’t have a 5-star rating, because they’ve noticed that 5-star rated accounts are usually the kind that muggers use, so in the evenings, you’re more likely to struggle to get a ride if you have a new account or a 5-star rated profile.

        But yeah, some of the stories I’ve heard range from people who are abusive to the drivers, you have couples fighting in the backseat. You even have people who try to break things in the car.

        Reply

        • HvR

          November 21, 2019 at 19:03

          I’m usually too hammered or too tired to have any meaningful conversation.

          Also was told recently by an HR person that my face and demeanor does not make people feel that they can not approach me. Ek dink dis HR speak for jy lyk soos ‘n suur p..s. o/

          Reply

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