Uber India is watching you: Think twice before filing a bogus complaint

Ramarko Sengupta November 22, 2016 3 min

Story Highlights

  • Uber India is cracking down on mischievous riders who file false complaints to get a refund on their ride. It will ban serial offenders
  • The company is rolling out an update in its driver app — a software patch that tracks the driver's driving pattern, stops, detours, acceleration, slowing down etc — to better investigate complaints

Amit Soni, all of 21, hails from Haryana’s Falwal village and drives an Uber cab in the Delhi-NCR. He’s an affable young fellow, but had to bear the brunt of an allegedly false complaint from an Uber rider, that set him back by Rs 14,000.

The rider, he says, was a female journalist and supposedly wanted him to drive at over 80kmph, as she was running late. Since he declined to drive any faster (he was already at 80 kmph), she allegedly slapped a complaint against him for “bad behaviour and bad language,” for which a chunk of his earnings were deducted.

Apparently, there are many such instances of bogus complaints that come in from customers or “riders” as Uber calls them. The ride-sharing app, however, doesn’t share the number of false complaints, only conceding that “the percentage is quite high.”

“Whenever there is a serious complaint against a driver, his service is immediately suspended pending further investigation, and during that time, his earnings take a hit. The latest update in our driver app will help us investigate such complaints better and faster”
— Uber India spokesperson

Looking out for the interests of its driver-partners, Uber India is now doing something to crackdown on mischievous riders who file false complaints to get a refund on their ride. It is rolling out an update in its driver app that will help it investigate complaints better and faster.

The update in the driver app is a software patch that tracks the driver-partner’s driving pattern, stops, detours, acceleration, slowing down etc. “So, basically if there is an allegation of some kind of assault on a rider, the driver would have likely slowed down or stopped. We can now ascertain this from the updated app via cloud,” the spokesperson said.

While cases of rash driving, overspeeding etc can be monitored effectively, thanks to the new update, cases related to bad or rude behaviour would still be be difficult to judge for the company.

The updated driver app is in pilot stage and is being tested out in Bengaluru. It will soon be rolled out across the country. Uber will go ahead and ban customers who are found to be serial offenders when it comes to filing false complaints.

While cases of rash driving, overspeeding etc can be monitored effectively, thanks to the new update, cases related to bad or rude behaviour would still be be difficult to judge for the company  

The taxi-hailing app allows customers to share feedback and complaints, if any, for each ride. It also often provides refunds to its customers if a ride has fallen short of its standards. The refund is deducted from the driver’s payout.

“Whenever there is a serious complaint against a driver, his service is immediately suspended pending further investigation, and during that time, his earnings obviously take a hit. The latest update in our driver app will help us investigate such complaints better and faster,” an Uber India spokesperson told FactorDaily.

Typically, when a complaint is filed, Uber gets in touch with the driver as well to get his/her side of the story. With the new update in the driver app, the company will be equipped with data to cross-check the customer’s and the driver’s versions.

“We are investing heavily in vehicle telematics signals ingestion and analytics, which further helps us keep track of Uber vehicles, including guiding them better on directions. This is also helpful while investigating any safety incidents reported by driver partners and/or riders,” Uber India said.


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