Uber is going to pay $9m to settle a complaint brought by the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) authority. In 2020 the CPUC fined Uber for not handed over information about assault and harassment.
CPUC asked Uber to share information regarding assault and sexual harassment. However, Uber refused to do so and argued that it would be a “shocking violation of privacy”. Furthermore, they said that disclosing such records publicly could be traumatic for victims.
The settlement between Uber, CPUC, and the Rape Abuse and Incest National Network (Rainn) last for two years. Uber was responsible to hand over records about reported incidents involving its drivers. CPUC also wanted all the names of “witnesses” of those attacked.
At that time, Uber said that sharing such information may discourage those who had been assaulted and reported in the future. In addition, Rainn had raised similar concerns and questioned whether the California officials would be able to take care of the sensitive information.
However, CPUC explained that they require the information “under seal” which indicates that the details of the individual information will remain secret. CPUC said that Uber’s response was an “effort to frustrate commission oversight”. Then CPUC fined Uber $59m. Though the fine was reduced from the initial amount, the authority of CPUC decided to use this money for passenger-safety promotion.
The ride-hailing app Uber shared a statement about this settlement, “glad the full commission has adopted this agreement. Most importantly, we can move forward with a solution that preserves the privacy and agency of survivors.”