Many riders that use Uber have been blaming Uber for trips that they never took. Uber responded and said that there was no security breach to Uber systems. Guess what people! I'd hate to break to you, but the only person you can blame is yourself, but it's okay! Not everyone is tech-savvy. I will break it down in this article in the most simple way possible. In this article I will tell you how your account has been breached and how to prevent that from happening in the future.
First of all before anything, make sure your password on your Uber account is not something simple. Make sure it consists of upper/lower case letters, symbols, and numbers. If you did that, then great job! Although, that still doesn't mean you're secure.
The hackers that breached your Uber Rider account did not target your Uber login specifically. The hacker targeted your smartphone. I know it's ironic; the smartphone isn't smart enough to secure itself so now you have to secure it. Uber takes great precautions on their IT security and login tokens. For example, you can't consistently try logging into the account when you keep getting incorrect credentials. You cant use Uber today in the USA and tomorrow in the UK without a notification. The app understands everything fishy going on. Uber has taken the right steps to secure there Riders. The company is nice enough to be giving refunds to Riders; when it wasn't Ubers fault in the first place. So how do you prevent this from happening, and be able to use Uber without walking on eggshells?
Do not install apps from unknown or non-reputable source:
Install apps on your phone only if they come from a trusted source, such as the manufacturer's app store. Most official app stores verify the authenticity of their products, so they're much safer. Before downloading any app, read the description and reviews so you understand what you're getting. Check the app's permissions before installing it. If an app requests access to your personal information, don't install it or deny the request. Sometimes an app that you think must look nice, is actually gaining a bit too much information from you; which then a hacker can use the app as a vulnerable source to lead to your smartphone and Uber Rider App.
Random text messages and emails:
Delete text messages and emails from unknown senders that ask for your information, and avoid clicking links in messages. Some hackers send messages that appear to be from your bank or another trusted source. I personally think that this is a big one. Hackers took advantage of the fact that Uber sometimes uses different numbers to create contact between the rider and driver for privacy reasons. This can create complications for the Rider. Also some hackers spoof the email address to Uber's email address. The hacker can take advantage of that by sending you a message indicating that it is Uber and some sort of update is needed to your account. The hacker will provide a link that will take you to page that looks alike to the Uber login page. That is called phishing. Do not fall for it. Always memorize the official URL to your login page. If it doesn't match, then it's a complete no no. If you click the link in the message, the hacker can steal your information or install malware on the phone. Also don't download apps via text message or emails; this is a common way for hackers to infect your device.
Avoid using your Uber app on Wifi:
Access the Internet on your phone only from a secure Wi-Fi network. Wi-Fi networks that aren't secure allow nearby hackers to intercept your data when you get online. Don't do any Uber'ing, shopping and banking on a public Wi-Fi network; hackers can steal your login credentials or other information. If you have access to a cellular network/data, use it instead of Wi-Fi.
Always update your smartphones firmware, and avoid jail-breaking:
Update your phone's firmware to the most current version all the time. Many phones updates the firmware for you automatically, but if you've turned this option off, you'll need to download the update manually. You can download the latest update directly from your phone. Alternatively, connect your phone to the computer and launch the software that came with the device. The application will connect to the download Web page and install the firmware on your phone. Most of the times jail-breaking your phone doesn't allow you to update your firmware; which causes a tremendous security hole for hackers. So avoid jail-breaking your phone if you're an Uber Rider/Driver.
Regularly delete your history and clear your cache:
Instead of me telling you to stop browsing the internet, make a little pit stop after your done browsing on your history and delete it all. Regularly delete your browsing history, cookies and cache so your virtual footprint is not available for hackers. You can also change the settings to delete at the end of every day. Depending on what websites you visit, some websites could be saving some information.
Use anti-virus and anti-malware on your smartphone:
Protect your phone with an anti-virus and anti-malware app. Check your phone's app store to see what's available for your device. 360 Security as an anti-virus and security free app for Android. Lookout is another free app for anti-virus and security for iPhone. Also another app you should check out for anti-malware is Malwarebytes.
If you implement and follow all the information above you should never have a problem with your Uber account again. If your account has already been breached; change your password and implement the information above. No more paying for trips that you've never been on. Enjoy Uber, it's a secure and great app!