back to article Uber slapped with $9m fine for letting dodgy drivers pick up punters

Colorado watchdogs today hit Uber subsidiary Rasier with an $8.9m fine for allowing drivers with felony convictions and/or major moving violations to pick up folks using the ride-hailing app. Rasier is the part of Uber that contracts with drivers. The US state's Public Utilities Commission (PUC) identified 57 Uber drivers …

  1. dan1980

    Yay disruption!

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "This error affected a small number of drivers …"

    "This error resulted in our customers being exposed to unvetted drivers for around ten person years …"

    FTFY, Uber.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I'm sorry but the fine should be higher and there should be criminal charges against Uber.

    Logic being that this is extremely dangerous, these people must be fully aware that they are not allowed to drive taxis yet are using a loop hole supplied via Uber which then makes you question motive.

  4. disgruntled yank Silver badge

    Background checks

    Long ago, I applied for a Denver taxi job. I assume that had I taken the job, the company would have checked my license information with the state motor vehicle department, but it didn't sound as if this would have happened quickly: data processing then was not what it is now. The main requirement that I remember was that I provide the company with a doctor's statement that I did not suffer from hemorrhoids. As it happens, a better job offer came along, and the family doctor was spared the trouble.

    1. Bronek Kozicki Silver badge
      Coat

      Re: Background checks

      So, not so much "background" as "bottom-level" checks

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Dammit..

    That's one line of revenue gone. No more Uber getaways for bank robbers. That's a bit like Western Union being told to check what money they're actually taking a percentage of and, I suspect, probably similarly ignored and skirted as much as possible because, well, profit..

  6. jmch Silver badge

    Land of the free

    "allowing drivers with felony convictions "

    Welcome to the US where prison is not for rehabilitation but for punishment. If you don't allow ex-felons to get jobs, of course they are going to turn back to crime. Sure, have extra monitoring for them, maybe limit to daytime shifts or whatever other safeguards are necessary (trust, but verify)

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Land of the free

      Welcome to the US where prison is not for rehabilitation but for punishment

      Same in the UK, judging by reoffending rates. But even in Sweden, which is probably the most liberal, reform minded country in the world, with the justice system focused on reforming prisoners, reoffending rates are still around 40%.

      Some people are just inherently criminal, and when you release them from prison, they are going to go and commit another crime. Curiously, there's no obvious link between low crime rates and the penal system being reformist or punitive, or even policing levels. Probably the three lowest crime countries in the world are Singapore, Switzerland. and Bharain, which have a spread from the nasty punitive police state of Bahrain, through to liberal, lightly policed Switzerland.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Land of the free

        Some people are just inherently criminal, and when you release them from prison, they are going to go and commit another crime.

        The situation is not exactly helped by the fact that, once convicted, this will follow the person around for the rest of their life so these people are often left with no other option. This is why wrongful convictions are so evil.

        1. Voland's right hand Silver badge

          Re: Land of the free

          his will follow the person around for the rest of their life

          Not everywhere. Some countries like Austria take erasing spent convictions so seriously that you cannot even get any information on them once they are spent even if the person re-offends.

          Apparently Josef Fritzl HAD a prior conviction. One that nobody can get hold of - it has been wiped.

          So once again - you have the full spectrum starting with UK where some stuff is nearly impossible to erase to countries like Austria where it is a criminal offense to keep on file "dirt" and use it once a conviction has been spent.

        2. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

          Re: Land of the free

          "The situation is not exactly helped by the fact that, once convicted, this will follow the person around for the rest of their life"

          Except for certain types of jobs, convictions "expire" and no longer have to be declared after various time frames depending on the offence and the conviction type. Jobs requiring an enhanced DBS check will still show up relevant expired convictions, but it's still possible to get security clearances even for MoD work with expired convictions on your record.

      2. dan1980

        Re: Land of the free

        @AC

        "Curiously, there's no obvious link between low crime rates and the penal system being reformist or punitive, or even policing levels. Probably the three lowest crime countries in the world are Singapore, Switzerland. and Bharain, which have a spread from the nasty punitive police state of Bahrain, through to liberal, lightly policed Switzerland."

        It could be that a liberal country like Switzerland, where quality of life and democratic freedoms are amongst the highest in the world, doesn't need heavy, punitive policing while Bahrain, an authoritarian regime and one of the less awesome places to be born, does need a strict and harsh penal system to keep the rate that low.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Coat

    "major moving violations "

    You failed secure the piano whist moving, resulting in in falling down the stairs trapping the hapless butler underneath; whilst at the same time a man with a large plank of wood kept banging people on the head whilst looking around to see who was calling him.

    1. Roj Blake Silver badge

      Re: "major moving violations "

      Another fine mess, Stanley...

      1. Anonymous South African Coward Silver badge

        Re: "major moving violations "

        Hardee har har.

    2. Chris G Silver badge

      Re: "major moving violations "

      "D'you know the piano's on my foot ,Dad?"

      " No son. You hum it, an' I'll play it."

  8. handleoclast Silver badge

    I have this great idea for business model

    What could possibly go wrong?

    1. Voland's right hand Silver badge

      Re: I have this great idea for business model

      No you do not.

      Al Capone already had it.

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    What could possibly go wrong?

    Everything. But if there's little or no comeback on you, why worry? All you have to do is make sure you keep the ball rolling (and maybe a few apologetic noises) until you find a rich mug willing to buy your business off of you for top dollar.

  10. Teiwaz Silver badge

    Is it 'cause

    It's reputedly one of those 'young, relaxed cargo short wearing' California concerns why it's still trading after all this.

    If it were based in Chicago with a cigar smoking underworld boss, Holywood would already be glorying up the tale with '30's stylings of when car sharing was free and dangerous for a couple of movies worth to tell the tale, if extremely loosely, how some star special agent took the entire racket down.

  11. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

    And Uber wonder why...

    ...the City Of London don't think they are a responsible company to hold a taxi licence. Uber seem to keep on with the story that it's process errors and one offs when in reality there appears to be a pattern of poor standards of driver vetting across their entire organisation.

    In the case of London, I wonder why if their licence was not renewed, they are allowed to continue operations while appealing. They don't have a valid licence now.

  12. Horse Sense

    Uber would let Ted Bundy sign up and use his VW bug.

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