Uber rolls out new security feature for its app

GEORGE TOWN: Ride sharing service Uber today rolled out a new security feature whereby their driver partners can log into the app via facial recognition.

Uber Malaysia communications head Leigh Wong said the app can recognise the face of the driver when they log in to use the service.

He said the feature was to be rolled out worldwide where the Uber service was available.

"This is one of the ways to make our rides more safe and reliable," he said in a media briefing here today.

Wong said the service in Penang had "thousands of drivers" signed up with more than 100,000 users but declined to give specifics due to such information being "strategic".

He nonetheless said 77% of Uber drivers in Penang worked for less than 20 hours a week while 28% of users used the service to commute to and from work.

He said popular places people use Uber to reach included tourist destinations, shopping malls and the Penang International Airport.

"We also found that 73 nationals entering the state use the service in Penang," he added.

On improving the service, Wong said Uber had a response team which could respond to complaints 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

He said Uber would call up their driver partners who received bad ratings to provide feedback and tips on improving their service.

For safety, Wong said the users could share the route the ride used with their contacts so their friends or family could know where they are.

He also urged users to use the "family profile" feature for families who have multiple users in the family using the app.