And Uber’s woes continue. The company has now been sued by one Jane Doe, who has filed a lawsuit against Uber and three of its top executives for privacy violation. The case has its roots in India when in a highly deplorable incident, Miss Doe was raped by an Uber driver in Delhi. Doe is a resident of Texas and filed this particular lawsuit after it was revealed that Eric Alexander, the company’s president of business in Asia Pacific, had illegally obtained her medical records.
The lawsuit takes into account counts like an intrusion into private affairs, public disclosure of private facts and finally, defamation. And to be fair, it appears like the lawsuit has a basis in fact. Indeed, Uber recently fired one of the plaintiffs named in the lawsuit, namely Eric Alexander, for privacy violation. Emil Michael, on the other hand, was also let go fairly recently while CEO Travis Kalanick has taken a leave of absence of unspecified length.
This is the second time Doe and the cab aggregator will find themselves face to face in court. Doe had earlier sued the company in 2015 for negligence and fraud after it was discovered that the culprit in the rape (the Uber driver) hadn’t gone through the background checks properly — as he should have had.
Apparently, Alexander had attempted to seek possibilities into whether the rape was in some way instigated by Miss Doe’s actions, or even as absurd as it sounds — her dress. The executives had also discussed the possibity of Uber’s Indian rival Ola, having a hand behind the incident.
Condemning Uber for its attitude, Doe’s lawyer Douglas Wigdor said:
It is shocking that Travis Kalanick could publicly say that Uber would do everything to support our client and her family in her recovery when he and other executives were reviewing illegally obtained medical records and engaging in offensive and spurious conspiracy theories about the brutal rape she so tragically suffered. Rape denial is just another form of the toxic gender discrimination that is endemic at Uber and ingrained in its culture.
Meanwhile, the case is pretty clear and Uber has itself accepted its mistake — indirectly if not forthrightly — by firing Alexander. As such, the company could end up having to pay heavy bucks in a settlement. Regardless, this does call for an attitude cheek at the cab aggregator.