Uber files: Company used political lobbying to break the law, violence against drivers, development


Thousands of leaked confidential documents have shed light on the inner workings of Uber in its early days. The leaked documents, dubbed ‘The Uber Files’, contain a total of 124,000 internal company documents, including 83 exchanged between company co-founder Travis Kalanick and other executives between 2013 and 2017. Contains more than , 000 emails and text messages. These documents were originally shared with The Guardian and the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) and they show how the San Francisco-headquartered company has been breaking the law, trying to fuel its growth in markets around the world. Used violence against drivers and widespread political lobbying.

The documents also reveal how the company prepared for things, many of which its own executive described as “f*ing illegal” and “sh storming” to enter new markets. it was done. In other documents, documents show how the company’s then leadership deployed a mechanism called a ‘kill switch’ to prevent law enforcement agencies from gaining access to the company’s internal documents while investigating the company. The report shows that the company deployed a kill switch to prevent officers from accessing the company’s servers and seizing documents during raids on Uber offices in at least six countries.

“We have not made excuses for past behavior that is clearly not in line with our current values. Instead, we ask the public what we have done over the past five years and what we will do in the years to come,” Uber K SVP of Marketing and Public Affairs said in a statement.

Here are some important revelations of Uber Files…

kill switch

The leaked document, as mentioned earlier, shows how the company used a stealth technology called a ‘kill switch’ to thwart government raids and prevent law enforcement agencies from seizing any documents. cut off access to the company’s servers for Leaked documents show that Uber co-founder Travis Kalanick personally ordered use of the mechanism when police raided the company’s headquarters in Amsterdam in 2015.

“Please hit the kill switch as soon as possible,” ordered Kalanick. “AMS access must be closed” [Amsterdam]”The documents performance.

Earlier in 2014, Zac de Kiewitt, an Uber attorney, asked his associates to “please access now” when French police raided the company’s office in Paris.

In addition, documents show that over a period of about a year, Uber used office raids in various countries around the world, including France, Romania, the Netherlands, Belgium, India and Hungary, to block police from accessing its systems. Used kill switch.

Uber Files shows that Uber policy chief Plouff participated in discussions about at least two raids. In March 2015, he sought information as police raided the Paris office for at least the second time.
“The police are still there. Big force (about 25),” McGann, the then lobbyist, said in an email sent to Plouffe. “The police are trying to break into the laptop.”

Notably, the kill switch wasn’t the only mechanism the company deployed to dodge local law-enforcement officials. The Uber files also show that Uber identified government officials the company thought were ordering its cabs to collect evidence. It will show them a fake version of the app with fake cars that never arrived. The company has deployed this technology in Spain, Netherlands, Denmark, Belgium, Russia and Bulgaria.

Additionally, the company has deployed Geofence near police stations in Denmark which will prevent the app from being used in blacked out locations unless specifically approved by an employee.

justify violence

The leaked documents also reveal how the company, led by its co-founder, used violence against drivers to advance its agenda. When Uber tried to enter France, local cabbies protested against the company. In an exchange, Uber executives warned Kalanick against sending drivers to protest cabbies in France, saying it could lead to violence.

“I think it’s worth it,” Kalanick said in response to the Mail by an Uber executive. “Violence Guaranteed”[s] success. And these people should be opposed, no?,” he added at the time.

In response to the report, a spokesperson for the Uber co-founder has said that he “never suggested that Uber should take advantage of violence at the expense of driver safety.”

Kalanick resigned in 2017 after complaints about sexual harassment, racial discrimination, bullying and concerns about the company’s workplace culture.

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