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Technology Uber releases data on sexual assaults and fatalities in first ever safety report

02:55  06 december  2019
02:55  06 december  2019 Source:   cnet.com

Uber will reportedly audio-record US rides for safety

  Uber will reportedly audio-record US rides for safety People will apparently be able to opt to have their journey recorded.The past few years have seen hundreds of Uber passengers and drivers alleging sexual assault during rides -- several lawsuits have been brought against Uber by people saying they were raped and groped by drivers.

After dozens of allegations of sexual assault by its drivers, Uber promised in May 2018 that it would publish a " safety transparency report " that would include data on the number of alleged assaults that happen during its rides. Now, a year and a half later, Uber has released that report .

Reports of sexual assault and murders from ride-hailing trips have since become a regular occurrence. Many of the companies now face a Throughout its report , Uber emphasized that 99.9 percent of its trips were safe and that it was taking an unusual step by releasing the data in the first

After dozens of allegations of sexual assault by its drivers, Uber promised in May 2018 that it would publish a "safety transparency report" that would include data on the number of alleged assaults that happen during its rides. Now, a year and a half later, Uber has released that report.

a black sign with white text: James Martin/CNET© Provided by CNET James Martin/CNET

"Voluntarily publishing a report that discusses these difficult safety issues is not easy," Tony West, Uber's chief legal officer, wrote in a blog post Thursday. "Most companies don't talk about issues like sexual violence because doing so risks inviting negative headlines and public criticism. But we feel it's time for a new approach."

Uber will test an audio recording safety feature in Brazil and Mexico

  Uber will test an audio recording safety feature in Brazil and Mexico A couple months ago, we learned that Uber was testing a feature that would allow riders to record audio through the app if they felt unsafe during a trip. Now, Uber is launching a pilot of that audio-recording feature in select cities in Brazil and Mexico, The Washington Post reports. Beginning in December, users in those cities will be allowed to opt in to activate audio recording on all trips. If, after the trip, they'd like to report a safetyBeginning in December, users in those cities will be allowed to opt in to activate audio recording on all trips. If, after the trip, they'd like to report a safety incident, they can submit the audio recording to Uber's customer support agents.

Uber has for the first time in its history released a comprehensive safety report about its rides in the US The report discloses that 3,045 sexual assaults occurred during Uber trips last year. The numbers represent the first set of publicly available data regarding the safety of Uber ’s ride-hailing

, Company makes first - ever disclosures of assaults , fatalities . Uber reported 58 road deaths out of 1.3 There is little comparable data on assaults in taxis or other transportation systems, and experts have said Uber had committed more than a year ago to release a safety study, a promise Lyft Inc

In its report, Uber said 99.9% of its rides ended without any safety reports and that remaining 0.1% mostly detailed minor safety issues, like harsh braking. That leaves 0.0003% of rides that had "critical safety" incidents. Of those critical incidents, there were 19 fatal assaults and 464 rapes in 2017 and 2018. There were more than 5,500 other incidents of sexual assault during those same two years.

a black sign with white text: Uber releases data on sexual assaults and fatalities in first ever safety report© CNET Uber releases data on sexual assaults and fatalities in first ever safety report

"Each of those incidents represents an individual who has undergone a horrific trauma," West told NBC News in an interview. "But I'm not surprised by those numbers. And I'm not surprised because sexual violence is just much more pervasive in society than I think most people realize."

Uber said that during those two years more than 1 million prospective drivers didn't pass its background checks. And since it launched its continuous background checks, more than 40,000 drivers have been removed from the app.

West said Uber is working on several more initiatives to bring those numbers down. One is sharing information about deactivated drivers with other ride-hailing companies, like Lyft. Another is creating a ride verification system for passengers with a unique 4-digit PIN.

This story is developing...

Worried about Uber's safety report on sexual assaults? How to stay safe when riding Uber and Lyft .
Uber says there were more than 3,000 allegations of sexual assault last year. So how do you stay safe on Uber and Lyft? Here are some tips.According to Uber's safety report, there were more than 3,000 allegations of sexual assault last year.

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