Uber says 2.7 mil­lion in UK were af­fected by se­cu­rity breach


Uber has ad­mit­ted that 2.7 mil­lion peo­ple in the UK were af­fected by a 2016 se­cu­rity breach that com­pro­mised cus­tomers’ in­for­ma­tion, in­clud­ing names, email ad­dresses and mo­bile phone num­bers. The ride-hail­ing com­pany had pre­vi­ously dis­closed that 57 mil­lion peo­ple world­wide were af­fected by a breach that it cov­ered up for more than a year.

It pub­lished an es­ti­mate of the num­ber of UK driv­ers and pas­sen­gers for the first time, prompt­ing con­cern from the mayor of Lon­don, where Uber is al­ready bat­tling a de­ci­sion to re­voke its li­cence to op­er­ate.

“This lat­est shock­ing devel­op­ment about Uber will alarm mil­lions of Lon­don­ers whose per­sonal data could have been stolen by crim­i­nals,” Sadiq Khan, Mayor of Lon­don, said.

“Uber needs to ur­gently con­firm which of their cus­tomers are af­fected, what is be­ing done to en­sure these cus­tomers don’t suf­fer ad­versely, and what ac­tion is be­ing taken to pre­vent this hap­pen­ing again in the fu­ture.

“The pub­lic will want to know how there could be this cat­a­strophic breach of per­sonal data se­cu­rity.”

The data reg­u­la­tor, the In­for­ma­tion Com­mis­sioner’s Of­fice (ICO), said it was yet to re­ceive tech­ni­cal re­ports on the in­ci­dent and called on Uber to alert af­fected cus­tomers as soon as pos­si­ble.

Uber said the fig­ure of 2.7 mil­lion, more than half of its 5 mil­lion UK cus­tomer base, was an “ap­prox­i­ma­tion rather than an ac­cu­rate and de­fin­i­tive count” be­cause it could not al­ways tell where each cus­tomer was lo­cated.

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