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Uber Hit With First State Lawsuit for Keeping Data Breach Secret

Uber Hit With First State Lawsuit for Keeping Data Breach Secret

Uber's data breach has got the attention of Washington state attorney general Bob Ferguson, who has begun the process of filing a multi-million dollar consumer protection lawsuit against the transportation company.

The stolen information includes names, email addresses and phone numbers and - for U.S. drivers - licence numbers.

Uber said on its website on Wednesday that independent forensics experts had not seen any indication that trip location history, credit card numbers, bank account numbers or dates of birth were downloaded in the breach.

Responding to the latest news, a spokesman for the ICO said: "As part of our investigation we are still waiting for technical reports which should give full confirmation of the figures and the type of personal data that has been compromised". If the breach impacts at least 500 residents, the business must also notify the attorney general's office within 45 days.

The revelation also comes as Uber battles to overturn a decision by London's transport regulator in September to revoke its operating license.

Washington is the latest state to take Uber to court over its hidden data breach
YURI GRIPAS REUTERS Washington is the latest state to take Uber to court over its hidden data breach

Had the incident taken place after the introduction of the EU's General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) next May, the penalties could have been more severe.

"Uber needs to urgently confirm which of their customers are affected, what is being done to ensure these customers don't suffer adversely, and what action is being taken to prevent this happening again in the future", he said.

The lawsuit alleges that Uber experienced a smaller data breach in 2014 and, although the company vowed to update its security practices in order to meet industry standards, it failed to do so, leading to the 2016 breach, NBC Chicago noted. Regulators from Belgium, Germany, France, Italy, the Netherlands, Spain and the United Kingdom will also take part.

It comes after a tumultuous few months for the San Francisco start-up that led to former CEO and co-founder Travis Kalanick being forced out after a series of boardroom controversies.

Uber failed to disclose the massive breach at the time, the company's new chief executive officer said last week. "And I will not make excuses for it".

Magnitude 7.0 quake hits off New Caledonia
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