Fol­low­ing a fa­tal en­counter in­volv­ing a hailed driver ear­lier this month, com­pa­nies are tak­ing steps to pro­tect mil­lions of users

China Daily (Latin America Weekly) - - Front Page - By OUYANG SHIJIA, MA SI and CHENG YU

As more peo­ple en­joy the con­ve­nience of smart­phone apps to hail a ride, order food or sim­ply de­liver a pack­age, se­cu­rity risks re­main that pose an in­creas­ing threat to per­sonal in­for­ma­tion, prop­erty and even the safety of users.

A young flight at­ten­dant was killed, al­legedly at the hands of her Didi driver ear­lier this month, thrust­ing the safety is­sue into the spotlight. Chi­nese ride-hail­ing be­he­moth Didi Chux­ing con­firmed the pas­sen­ger was us­ing Hitch, which al­lows peo­ple head­ing to the same des­ti­na­tions to take rides to­gether. Didi claimed the sus­pect used the Didi ac­count of his fa­ther, who has passed the safety mea­sures re­quired by Didi’s Hitch busi­ness.

To pre­vent such tragedies from hap­pen­ing again and to boost its over­all se­cu­rity, Didi said it will sus­pend the Hitch ser­vice “be­tween 10 pm and 6 am ev­ery night.”

A func­tion that al­lows driv­ers and pas­sen­gers to post com­ments about each other will also be taken down to avoid pos­si­ble vul­gar de­scrip­tions of women. Per­sonal in­for­ma­tion and pro­file pic­tures of pas­sen­gers and carown­ers will be vis­i­ble only to the in­di­vid­u­als, Didi said in a state­ment.

Also, driver fa­cial recog­ni­tion will be made com­pul­sory for ev­ery “hitch” trip to min­i­mize the risk of unau­tho­rized ac­count use.

Chen Yin­jiang, deputy sec­re­tary-gen­eral of the China Con­sumer Pro­tec­tion Law So­ci­ety, said, “As the ser­vice provider, Didi needs to con­duct safety checks on driv­ers and has the re­spon­si­bil­ity to take more mea­sures to pro­tect the lives and prop­erty of pas­sen­gers, ac­cord­ing to the con­sumer pro­tec­tion law.”

He added, “Cur­rently, many mo­bile phone apps have been fraught with is­sues such as seek­ing more per­mis­sions than re­quired or col­lect­ing more in­for­ma­tion than what they re­ally need, pos­ing a sig­nif­i­cant new risk for users.”

Chen cited China’s new cy­ber se­cu­rity law, claim­ing that net­work op­er­a­tors, de­fined as own­ers and ad­min­is­tra­tors of net­works and net­work ser­vices providers, are re­quired to col­lect end user per­sonal data in a le­gal and proper man­ner.

The cy­ber se­cu­rity law came into ef­fect in June 2017, pay­ing more at­ten­tion to the pro­tec­tion of per­sonal in­for­ma­tion and in­di­vid­ual pri­vacy. Ac­cord­ing to the law, net­work prod­uct and ser­vice providers

The num­ber of Chi­nese mo­bile phone ne­ti­zens

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from China

© PressReader. All rights reserved.