NPC to continue data breach probe on Uber despite Grab deal

The National Privacy Commission (NPC) said the sale of Uber’s Southeast Asia operations to main rival Grab will not affect its ongoing investigation into past Uber breaches that involved Filipino users.

NPC chair Raymund Liboro

In a press statement, NPC chair Raymund Liboro said the agency is continuing its investigation on the data breach and would soon issue a report. In November last year, the local office of Uber admitted to the NPC that personal information of Filipinos were among those exposed during a data breach in October 2016.

At the same time, the NPC said it has summoned Grab to a meeting next week to enlighten the agency on its deal with Uber, particularly its provision on the processing of Filipino drivers’ and users’ data and the measures they take in protecting these data.

“As the biggest TNC (transport network company) in the Philippines after the exit of Uber, we want Grab to demonstrate that they could ‘walk the talk’ when it comes to protecting personal data and upholding the data privacy rights of its drivers and users,” Liboro stated.

Grab Philippines legal counsel John Paul Nabua, however, has assured the NPC of its continued cooperation and compliance with Philippine data privacy and protection laws.

Grab also vowed there will be no sharing of any user data between Uber and Grab. Uber users and drivers will be required to register anew with Grab to allow them to use the Grab’s TNVS platform.

Meanwhile, Sen. Grace Poe said the government, through the LTFRB, should ensure that the number of available vehicles serving the public should at least be maintained.

“Ideally, the more players in the market, the better for the public because each player will compete and strive to provide better service. Perhaps the departure of Uber would open up the market for the entry of local companies into the TNVS market,” she stated.

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