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Uber has revolutionized the way we get around, especially if you're constantly hopping in a taxi or using a car service. The days of trying to find local taxi numbers and local car services are gone. Uber is there for your whether you are in Chicago, London, Bali or Sydney. However, with the latest version of the app a new privacy issue has arisen with Uber.
What Has Uber Done?
After its most recent update, the App will collect data on your location for up to five minutes after you have closed the app. Previously, the application only tracked your location while the App was open and active. With the new policy, Uber will also know where you have been for up to 5 minutes after you have left the car. Unfortunately, this is not an optional feature, it is integrated into the App, and if you choose not to allow Uber location access, you’ll have to manually input a location every time you need an Uber pickup.
This new policy might be of serious concern to users who are not comfortable with Uber tracking their location after exiting the car. While Uber has stated the data collected, will help them improve customer service, drop-offs, and pick-up times.
Should You Be Concerned?
To some privacy-conscious individuals, it may seem that Uber has embarked on some kind of Orwellian nightmare, but they need not worry. Firstly, up to now this data collection by Uber seems to be optional. Secondly, users might want to consider many automation apps available for smartphones, which possibly can short-circuit the Uber tracking. For example, by automatically closing off your location service when you close the Uber App, and then restarting the location service after a few minutes. How efficient this would be remains to be seen, along with whether Uber will force this feature on all its users or not.
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