December 14, 2016 on the “NBC Nightly News”, I saw a story about Uber employees tracking customer’s information. According to the news story, a former security engineer, Ward Spangenberg) alleges in his lawsuit that between March 2015 and February 2016, that security measures were so low that Uber employees were able to track thousands of riders trips without the customer being aware “(NBC Nightly News, 2016). Spangenberg states they were “able to track high-profile politicians, celebrities, and even personal acquaintances of Uber employees, including ex-boyfriends/girlfriends, and ex-spouses”(NBC Nightly News, 2016). He also explained how easy it was to print a spreadsheet and align it with a map in order to see all of a customer’s information. As a result, Mr. Spagenberg stated he was fired 11 months later for the security allegations that he mentioned to Uber.
Uber being a 70 billion company was not laxed and quickly spoke up.
Joe Sullivan (Uber Chief Security Officer) alleges Spangenberg was let go because he was found guilty of tracking customer’s information himself. Something that was denied by Spagenberg. Spagenberg argues he was provided a different reason as to why he was fired.
Per Uber, they have security measures in place that they continue to follow to this day. According to this story, there is still an option for customers to not be tracked, the customers are to turn off their “location services function” and “input manually your address and destination”. Anyone that is skeptical of ride sharing programs can cause an individual to avoid such services all together. There have already been many stories of drivers doing unscrupulous things (such as rape), and here is yet another story that can cause a reduction in these 70 billion sales despite the fact that Uber just entered a 3 year partnership with Metra rails (NBC, 2016). Is this just another case of a whistle-blower being discredited by the Chief Security Officer of the organization, or is this a disgruntled employee refusing to follow ship and follow managements command?