From controversial statements from executives to concerns over its users’ data privacy, it’s been a rough week for Uber. It’s now trying to do some damage control. The company announced today that it has hired a team of privacy experts, including Harriet Pearson, previously IBM’s Chief Privacy Officer for nearly two decades- and her colleagues at the Hogan Lovells law firm. Pearson will be in charge of conducting a thorough review of Uber’s data privacy program and assessing changes the company needs to implement.
The controversy surrounding Uber’s privacy practices is picking up faster than the drivers of the global ride-sharing service. To help curb that lack of enthusiasm, the San Francisco-based startup has tapped a Silicon Industry industry veteran from one of tech’s oldest stalwarts. Uber has tapped former IBM chief privacy officer Harriet Pearson to work with the company’s privacy team. As a partner for Washington D.C.-based legal firm Hogan Lovells, where she specializes in cybersecurity and privacy, Pearson and her staff will launch a review of Uber’s existing data privacy program in order to reassess problem areas and provide recommendations for change. “Our business depends on the trust of the millions of riders and drivers who use Uber,” wrote Uber spokesperson Natalia Montalvo in a memo on Thursday. “The trip history of our riders is important information and we understand that we must treat it carefully and with respect, protecting it from unauthorized access.