Uber used secret program to track Lyft drivers

There also supposedly was a flaw in Lyft's app that allowed Uber to see drivers' permanent ID token, and by cross referencing their locations with that of its own contractors, it determined which ones were working for both companies.

The program, The Information reports, was nicknamed "Hell" - a riff on another of Uber's controversial internal features nicknamed "God View".

A Lyft spokesperson did, however, provide The Information with a statement (via TechCrunch), saying: "We are in a competitive industry". According to The Information, Uber created fake Lyft rider accounts and spoofed their location, letting the company gather data on where drivers were available. Uber made sure that in each city where it was competing with Lyft, the fake rider locations were organized in a grid-like format so that it could view the entire city.

Fellow tech giant Uber, on the other hand, seems to revel in evil deeds - or at the very least questionable business practices - including using a program called "Hell" to undermine its competition.

Between 2014 and 2016, Uber reportedly used a secret program named "Hell" to keep tabs on its main rival Lyft.

IT Pro has contacted both Uber and Lyft for comment, but hadn't received a response at the time of publication.

A driver displaying Uber and Lyft ride sharing signs on his vehicle windscreen in Santa Monica. The Information, citing unnamed sources familiar with the matter, reported that only a few people knew of the program, including CEO Travis Kalanick.

Once it identified these drivers, Uber then apparently executed some really rather skulduggery, whereby it would send more riders the way of "double-appers" so that they met special Uber targets and earned bonus money. They could also constitute fraud, misappropriate of trade secrets, and violations ofthe federal Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, according to the report.

  • Todd Kelly