Uber has introduced some additional privacy functionality, obscuring the contact details exchanged between rider and driver.
If you've ever had a call from your Uber driver to find out where on the road you're standing, you may have thought later on, "Hey, does that mean they still have my number?" The answer used to be yes.
I've only ever known Uber drivers to be overly chatty and nice, clearly hungry for that five star rating. But God forbid if there was some sort of disagreement or altercation, it might not be the best idea for them to have my details.
From now on, those details won't be shared, which should protect both drivers and riders. Uber will be redirecting both calls and text messages so the phone numbers don't appear, and says you can expect these visible changes within the app:
- Calling or receiving a call from a driver: their number may appear as a landline number.
- Texting and calling a driver: the numbers may be different.
- If you’re a regular rider: you may notice the same anonymised number used for different drivers.
- If ‘Private Number’ is enabled on your phone: you’ll still be able to text your driver but you’ll need to disable it to be able to make calls through the app.
You can also notify up to five friends and family of your trip route and ETA, which is the equivalent of "If I'm not there in 20 minutes, call the cops."
You can find out more about the new safety features here.