Arrow-right Camera

The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Wednesday, October 21, 2020  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
Partly Cloudy Day 42° Partly Cloudy
News >  Business

Uber fined nearly $1.2 million by Dutch, UK over data breach

An exterior view of the headquarters of Uber in San Francisco. (Eric Risberg / AP)
An exterior view of the headquarters of Uber in San Francisco. (Eric Risberg / AP)
Associated Press

LONDON – The ride-hailing service Uber has been fined nearly $1.2 million by British and Dutch authorities for failing to protect customers’ data during a cyberattack in 2016.

Britain’s Information Commissioner’s Office said Tuesday it fined the company $491,000 and Dutch officials imposed a $679,000 fine for violating Dutch data protection laws.

British officials cited a series of “avoidable data security flaws” that allowed personal data for roughly 2.7 million U.K. customers to be downloaded by hackers during an incident in October and November 2016.

The information commission’s director of investigations, Steve Eckersley, said Uber had shown a “complete disregard for the customers and drivers whose personal information was stolen” after the substantial security breach.

“At the time, no steps were taken to inform anyone affected by the breach, or to offer help and support,” he said. “That left them vulnerable.”

Dutch officials say Uber did not report the data breach to authorities within 72 hours as required by regulations. The Dutch Data Authority says 57 million users worldwide and 174,000 Dutch citizens were affected by the data breach.

The U.S.-based company said in a statement that Uber is “pleased to close this chapter on the data incident from 2016.”

It said a number of technical improvements have been made to the security system since then.

“We learn from our mistakes,” the company said. The statement also cites a number of changes to the senior management team that have been made in the last year.

The Spokesman-Review Newspaper

Local journalism is essential.

Give directly to The Spokesman-Review's Northwest Passages community forums series -- which helps to offset the costs of several reporter and editor positions at the newspaper -- by using the easy options below. Gifts processed in this system are not tax deductible, but are predominately used to help meet the local financial requirements needed to receive national matching-grant funds.

Subscribe to the Coronavirus newsletter

Get the day’s latest Coronavirus news delivered to your inbox by subscribing to our newsletter.

New health insurance plans available November 1 through Washington Healthplanfinder

 (Photo courtesy WAHBE)

Fall means the onset of the cold and flu season.