This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.
The bad news keeps piling up for shamed ride-sharing giant Uber. In November, news surfaced that the personal information of roughly 57 million Uber users was hacked. Not only that, but the company confirmed that it had paid the hackers $100,000 to delete the stolen data and keep the breach quiet. Now, we know that the hacker responsible for it all was a 20-year-old Florida man.
Three sources close to the hack confirmed to Reuters that the person responsible for the hack is a 20-year-old living in Florida, however, his identity couldn’t be established. According to the Reuters report, the hacker is described as “living with his mom in a small home trying to help pay the bills.” Members of Uber’s security team reportedly paid the man to confirm his identity and sign a nondisclosure agreement. In addition, those close to the matter said that the company conducted a forensic analysis of his machine to make sure the hacked data had been removed.
The Reuters report details that the Florida hacker paid a second person to access GitHub in an effort to obtain credentials for accessing Uber’s code and data. GitHub said that the incident isn’t the result of security failures on its end.
Uber paid the 20-year-old $100,000 as part of its “bug bounty” program, which the company normally uses to reward people for identifying and reporting vulnerabilities in its software. The hack, which took place in October 2016, included the information such as email addresses and phone numbers of 57 million users, including 600,000 drivers in the US.
Uber spokesman Matt Kallman declined to comment on the identity of the hacker.
At the time of the payout to the hacker, Uber didn’t prosecute him, as the company’s security team didn’t feel that he posed a further threat. Former Uber CEO Travis Kalanick reportedly knew about the hack and the company’s move to pay the hacker in November 2016. Because Kalanick stepped down in June, the company’s new CEO Dara Khosrowshahi took to firing two security officials, believing they should have informed regulators when the hack was discovered. Kalanick declined to comment.
Feature photo by Evelyn Hockstein/For The Washington Post via Getty Images
The American Express Platinum card has some of the best perks out there: cardholders enjoy the best domestic lounge access (Delta SkyClubs, Centurion Lounges, and Priority Pass), up to a $200 annual airline fee credit as well as up to $200 in Uber credits, and mid-tier elite status at SPG, Marriott, and Hilton. Combined with the 60,000 point welcome offer -- worth $1,140 based on TPG's valuations -- this card is a no-brainer for frequent travelers. Here are 5 reasons you should consider this card, as well as how you can figure out if the $550 annual fee makes sense for you.
- Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® points after you use your new Card to make $5,000 in purchases in your first 3 months.
- Enjoy Uber VIP status and free rides in the U.S. up to $15 each month, plus a bonus $20 in December. That can be up to $200 in annual Uber savings.
- 5X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel.
- 5X Membership Rewards points on prepaid hotels booked on amextravel.com.
- Enjoy access to the Global Lounge Collection, the only credit card airport lounge access program that includes proprietary lounge locations around the world.
- Receive complimentary benefits with an average total value of $550 with Fine Hotels & Resorts. Learn More.
- $200 Airline Fee Credit, up to $200 per calendar year in baggage fees and more at one qualifying airline.
- Get up to $100 in statement credits annually for purchases at Saks Fifth Avenue on your Platinum Card®. Enrollment required.
- $550 annual fee.
- Terms Apply.
- See Rates & Fees