Uber Technolog ies Inc paid hackers $100,000 to keep secret a massive breach last year that exposed the personal information of about 57 million accounts of the ride-service provider, the company said on Tuesday.
Discovery of the company’s cover-up of the incident resulted in the firing of two employees who led Uber’s response to the hack, said Dara Khosrowshahi, who was named in August following the departure of founder Travis Kalanick.
In a statement posted online, Khosrowshahi said he had only recently learned of the breach, which happened in October 2016. And added “None of this should have happened, and I will not make excuses for it,
On Wednesday, the Information Commissioner’s Office said that Uber’s admission “raises huge concerns around its data protection policies and ethics”
The hack is another controversy for Uber on top of sexual harassment allegations, a lawsuit alleging trade secrets theft and multiple federal criminal probes that culminated in Kalanick’s ouster in June.
Uber’s now scrambling to limit the damage to its reputation. The company has hired a former general counsel for the NSA to help it rethink its security practices and has also retained Mandiant, a cybersecurity firm that has dealt with the fallout from many high-profile breaches.