Uber is highly vulnerable to fraud. Warn your friends!

Close your Uber account before it is too late!

Let me explain why there is no other good option to closing your account. And run you through the past few hours of my life.

First, thanks to Vanessa Teo, I now know of Judith Yuen, who was charged almost SGD900 between 12 and 13 Apr. She is now trying to get the money back, which is always a painful experience we rather avoid.

If not for a series of fortunate coincidences, I could have suffered much worse.

My only warning was an email from Uber that informed me that someone had changed the name on my account. If I had missed that, it might have been days or months before I noticed anything.

A nondescript email was my only warning.

I opened my app and noticed that not only was the name changed, a ride had been requested in Moscow, but was cancelled. Probably just testing the account.

My first reaction was to try to report this fraud to Uber, but they do not provide any way to do so. Their advice if you think your account is compromised is to change the password, which I did. I changed it to a randomly generated string, the kind that you need a quantum computer to break.

I also tried to remove all my payment information, but Uber would not allow me to delete the last credit card.

Fine, this was not resolved, but with the password change I thought I had some time. I had to go out for a while.

An hour later, my phone buzzed to inform me that Uber was locating a driver for me! In Moscow, of course. I immediately tried to cancel the call, but the app did not respond until several minutes later. Cancellation succeeded, but I was billed 99 rubles (SGD2.50). I think the only reason I got this notification was because my app was still open.

So changing my password didn’t work.

Looks like I have no choice but to close the entire account. Except that apparently, this is not the customer’s choice. The best I could do was submit a request for the account to be closed. So at this moment the account is still active, and the folks in Moscow can resume their joyrides once I go to bed, unable to cancel their requests.

So I called the bank. They cannot block transactions from Uber, so I had to block the entire credit card.

I have to get a new credit card.

But that is still better than having to dispute charges later. The $2.50 incurred so far is peanuts compared to the possible damage, as the case above illustrates.

But for all my friends, I think the least inconvenient thing you can do right now is to start the process of closing your Uber account. Hopefully they don’t take too long… Click here to find out how to Cancel an Uber Account.

Close your account now!

If not, you may be cancelling a credit card later, or worse, trying to get your money back.

If not, you might meet my new buddy (below)

PS: Also extremely unimpressed that Uber clearly has not invested in the technology to detect fraud. I was logged in from Singapore, but they let someone on an unknown device call cars in Moscow. Judith had her account charged from 4 different countries within 24 hours. They invested a lot to deceive regulatory authorities, but nothing to prevent crooks from using them to deceive customers.

Andrew Wan

Reader Contributor

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