- Uber founder and former CEO Travis Kalanick was known for breaking the rules to extend Uber’s reach. Those methods have become the focus of several criminal probes.
- REUTERS/Adnan Abidi
Uber is now facing five criminal probes by the Justice Department, two more than previously known, Bloomberg’s Eric Newcomer first reported.
Officials are now investigating whether Uber violated price-transparency laws, according to the report. In a separate investigation, authorities are reportedly probing whether the ride-hailing giant stole schematics outlining Alphabet’s self-driving technology.
Representatives for Uber and the Justice Department declined to comment.
The price-transparency probe relates to Uber’s use of tools called Cascade and Firehouse that allegedly offered discounts to some customers over others. Federal law prohibits price discrimination.
The other probe relates to the civil lawsuit filed against Uber by Waymo, the self-driving-car company spun out of Alphabet. The suit claims Uber stole trade secrets and intellectual property for its autonomous driving efforts and is set to go to trial in December.
The Justice Department is also investigating Uber’s use of a software tool dubbed “Greyball” that, according to The New York Times, was meant to help drivers evade transportation regulators. Additionally, it’s investigating whether Uber violated laws involving the bribery of foreign officials.
News of the probes come a few weeks after Uber lost its license to operate in London. Transport for London said the company wasn’t “fit and proper” to hold a license after its use of Greyball became public knowledge.
But the investigations also come in the wake of a string of scandals that have rocked the company in the last several months, putting pressure on newly appointed CEO Dara Khosrowshahi to rebuild Uber’s reputation. Cofounder Travis Kalanick resigned as CEO of Uber in June.
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