Regulation

Uber Fined $629K By Colombia For Blocking Regulators’ Access

Uber Fined $629K By Colombia For Regulatory Obstruction

The commerce regulator in Colombia said it will fine Uber over $629,000 because the ride-hailing firm obstructed a regulatory visit two years ago, according to Reuters

Uber is not technically legal in Colombia, but it is used widely. While Colombia hasn’t taken any specific steps to regulate ride-hailing services like Uber, the country has said that it will suspend the licenses of drivers caught using the service for 25 years. 

The Superintendency of Industry and Commerce is levying the fine and it said that Uber didn’t give regulators information when they asked for it and that they even blocked regulators’ access to company computers. The regulators visited in October of 2017.

“The company presented a disrespectful and obstructive attitude in the face of different information requirements on the part of officials,” the regulator said in a statement.

Uber said it hasn’t yet been officially contacted about the fine, and that once it was it would decide what steps to take.

In addition to the fine on the whole company, the regulator has fined three Uber employees by name, with fine amounts ranging from $1,469 to $7,344. The regulator said a manager and two legal workers “collaborated and executed the obstruction of the mentioned administrative visit and the incompletion of the orders and instructions imparted by the Superintendency. It is also proven that these people gave evasive and incomplete declarations about their roles and functions inside the company, and about their knowledge of the corporate structure of Uber Colombia.”

Last month, Colombia compelled Uber to make its data security better after a company breach in 2012 that affected the data of 267,000 people in the country. 

In America, Uber recently instituted a hiring freeze in an effort to save money. The company suspended new software engineer hires as well as product managers since those departments had already reached employment capacity, an Uber spokesman told Bloomberg on Friday (Aug. 9). Uber’s freight and autonomous vehicles businesses are not affected by the freeze.

“We are continuing to aggressively hire talent, including many engineers, all over the world,” the spokesman said. “We temporarily hit pause on some teams while we ensure we’re being both effective and efficient in staffing against our strategic priorities.”

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