Feds probe Uber’s use of fake app to stymie city inspectors

DETROIT (AP) — The Justice Department is probing allegations that Uber used phony software to thwart city efforts to make sure the ride-hailing company follows local regulations.

The city of Portland, Oregon, says in an April audit report that it was notified of the inquiry by the U.S. Attorney’s Office in San Francisco. Portland says it is cooperating. Uber and the U.S. Attorney’s Office wouldn’t comment.

Reuters reported Thursday that the investigation is criminal and may involve a grand jury.

Uber’s software — nicknamed “Greyball” — identified regulators who posed as riders while trying to collect evidence that Uber’s service was breaking taxi laws. Uber allegedly served up a fake version of its app to make it appear the undercover regulators were summoning a car, only to have the ride canceled.

 

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