Hacked Uber Accounts Being Used in China

Hacked accounts of the car service provider Uber are being used in China. Customers with legitimate Uber accounts are complaining about money being deducted from their accounts for payments to Uber rides in China. A recent report show that fake drivers and passengers were responsible for the growth of the company in China.

Uber recently entered into China in a bid to extend its global market hold, but has not had the ideal start it wanted. Protests against the company’s taxi app erupted soon after they began operations in China with local taxi drivers protesting against it. Uber strongly admonished its drivers to take any part in the protests, saying that those who disobey would be severely punished.

However, there is also the issue of drivers facing passenger pick-ups and drops to take unfair advantage of the company’s freebies and gifts for drivers. Uber gives away incentives to drivers for their work in order to attract more drivers and increase their market presence in China. Drivers, though, have been using hacked phones in order to act as a driver as well as a passenger in order to trick Uber into believing that they dropped off a passenger and avail on their bonuses.

If all this was not enough, it is now being reported that people in China are using hacked accounts of Uber customers in order to use the service for free. People have been tweeting about the issue for a while now, with tweets like ‘@Uber I had a great ride in China this morning! Except, weird, I wasn’t in China this morning’ have been posted by frustrated users who have found money being deducted from their accounts without them taking a Uber trip.

The tweets were first brought to the notice of Motherboard by ‘Just Aguy @chi1cabby’.

The first report about Uber accounts being hacked was revealed in May when it was said that Uber accounts were being sold on the dark web for a measly $1. Accounts from Europe and the U.S are affected of the hack. In August, the price of the hacked accounts dropped further to just 40 cents. Uber, in response, said it was doing experiments with two-step authentication.

Earlier it was even reported that websites like Taobao were selling fully functional Uber driver accounts in order to save people from Uber’s registration procedure. Uber released a statement via email saying that they use high-grade protocols to maintain the integrity of their accounts. The company also encouraged users to use stronger passwords.

Our security teams are laser focused on protecting the integrity of our community’s Uber accounts. We use technical measures to detect any issues and are always enhancing the measures we deploy to protect our users’ accounts. We also encourage all of our users to choose strong and unique usernames and passwords and to avoid reusing the same credentials across multiple sites and services.

Image from Evan Lorne / Shutterstock.

Ali is a freelance journalist, having 5 years of experience in web journalism and marketing. He contributes to various online publications. With a master degree, now he combines his passions for writing about internet security and technology. When he is not working, he loves traveling and playing games.