In a move to protect consumers, bitter rivals Uber Technologies (UBER 2.59%) and Lyft (LYFT 3.03%) have joined forces to share information on problematic drivers and delivery workers who have been banned from the ride-hailing platforms for serious and dangerous offenses. Uber and Lyft have teamed up on the Industry Sharing Safety Program, which aims to prevent the most serious of safety incidents, including sexual and physical assaults.
The cooperation between the two aims to prevent offenders from simply transferring platforms and causing additional trouble. A 2019 report by Uber revealed roughly 6,000 cases of sexual assault over the previous two years in the U.S., a period covering 2.3 billion rides by the company.
The two companies know more can be done to protect their passengers. In the future, the program will be open to other transportation and delivery companies, with participants agreeing to meet specific requirements for data accuracy.
"Sexual assault is drastically underreported, making these crimes less likely to show up in our rigorous background check and screening processes," Jennifer Brandenburger, head of policy development at Lyft, said in a press release. "With the Industry Sharing Safety Program, Lyft and Uber are working together to further enhance our screening capabilities, as well as the safety of the entire rideshare industry."
Both ride-hailing rivals have faced scrutiny and legal action due to their handling of sexual assault and other safety concerns. This is an attempt to decrease serious incidents that could harm the industry's reputation and demand at a time when transportation-as-a-service is poised to be a huge part of the automotive industry's evolution.