Uber is Finally Putting an End to its User Location Tracking Antics


Uber received massive criticism for invading user privacy when last year after an update, it was found out that the ride-sharing company’s app is being used to track its users even when they aren’t using the app, which raised a lot of privacy concerns among the masses.

The Uber app could track a users’ location five minutes after the ride had ended. It also tracks your location when you’re using the app in the foreground, that is while searching for a cab and booking the ride. The app also tracks your location during the ride, until it ends or is canceled.

The update allowed users to either give Uber full access to their location data or revoke access in full — rendering the app kind of useless.

According to the company, location tracking enhances safety, customer service, pick-ups and drop-offs. But such tracking has also made the users a bit uncomfortable as it raises security and privacy concerns.

Now Uber’s security chief has confirmed to Reuters that the company has pulled out its invasive feature which had been a hot topic for debate.

The tracking service would stay active even if the app is running in the background and isn’t active on screen at the moment.

The company has put an end to its controversial feature of the app in a bid to fix its reputation and it’s a good decision considering the company has been in news for all the wrong reasons in the last few months.

Mark Warner | Flickr

This change can be attributed to the fact that Uber pledged ‘180 days of change‘ following Travis Kalanick’s departure due to a series of scandals involving sexual harassment at the company.

Uber’s Security Chief who has also been co-running the company since Kalanick left said that these changes are nothing to do with the appointment of former Expedia CEO Dara Khosrowshahi as the global ride-sharing company’s new CEO or any other executive changes.

These changes to the location will first be rolled out to iOS and later to Android devices. If you’re running Uber app on Android and wish to stop the app from tracking your location, here is an easy way to ensure your privacy.

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Bike enthusiast, traveller, ManUtd follower, army brat, word-smith; Delhi University, Asian College of Journalism, Cardiff University alumnus; a journalist breathing tech these days.