Uber has officially rolled out its new Mask Verification feature that is designed to be a new way to protect both riders and drivers. The technology was initially rolled out to drivers in June in an effort to hold drivers accountable for keeping their riders safe. Now, riders who are flagged for not wearing a mask will be required to undergo the same verification. So far, 3.5 million drivers have completed more than 100 million mask verifications.
“We firmly believe that accountability is a two-way street. That’s why we’re expanding the same technology to riders, too. If a driver reports to us that a rider wasn’t wearing a mask, the rider will be required to take a selfie with their face covered before they’re able to take another trip with Uber.” Uber said in a news release.
If a rider is caught violating the Uber mask policy several times, the company says that the rider could be blocked from using the app.
Some concerns have been raised about the company collecting biometric information, but they insist this isn’t the case. Instead, the technology detects the mask as an option and doesn’t process biometric information.
Although this is new for riders, Uber assures riders that they can always cancel their trip at no cost if the person isn’t wearing a mask. The company hopes that this will provide ease of mind for riders.
Uber has distributed over 1.5 million masks and sanitizers to drivers and delivery people for free. and has made them available to drivers and delivery people for free. They hope to provide supplies free of charge through 2020.