A Safer Ride

Beijing Review - - THIS WEEK ECONOMY -

Lead­ing ride-hail­ing plat­form Didi has re­cently launched an au­dio and video record­ing func­tion in 10 cities. This move has sparked heated on­line dis­cus­sion as to whether the sur­veil­lance mea­sure will help boost the safety of pas­sen­gers or in­fringe on per­sonal pri­vacy.

As a step to strengthen safety su­per­vi­sion, Didi has ac­ti­vated the au­dio record­ing func­tion na­tion­wide and will con­tinue to ex­pand the vis­ual record­ing func­tion across the coun­try.

Liu Ruisheng, an as­so­ciate re­searcher with the Chi­nese Academy of So­cial Sciences, said there is no con­tra­dic­tion be­tween em­pha­siz­ing se­cu­rity and pro­tect­ing pri­vacy. How­ever, Didi can­not force con­sumers to ac­cept the au­dio and vis­ual record­ings, and their right to choose should be guar­an­teed. The com­pany ought to de­velop a de­tailed pro­ce­dure of data pro­cess­ing to en­sure data se­cu­rity while ask­ing for pas­sen­gers’ per­mis­sion be­fore ini­ti­at­ing the func­tion.

Didi of­fers a wide range of app­based trans­porta­tion op­tions for

550 mil­lion users world­wide, with about 30 mil­lion rides each day. How­ever, the mur­der of a young fe­male pas­sen­ger by a Didi driver in

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