Uber Riders Who Violated Face Mask Policy Will Have to Take a Selfie

Passengers who have refused to wear face coverings when trying to hitch a ride with Uber will soon be required to take a selfie before they can even request a car, Uber announced Tuesday.

In May, Uber began requiring both passengers and drivers to wear cloth face masks amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. However, not everyone has complied with the order.

"If we do have people who are still violating the policy, we want to be able to verify them with an extra step," Uber's senior director of product management, Sachin Kansal, told ABC News. "And if they're not wearing a mask, they will not be able to take a ride."

According to the announcement, the app will use face detection technology to determine whether a driver is wearing a face covering based on the photo. If the face covering isn't detected, the driver won't be allowed to go online and begin picking up rides.

Uber says passengers who have violated the face mask policy in the past will be required by the app to take a selfie before they can request a ride. No biometric information is used and the company says the selfies aren't stored for long.

"In about four days we delete the picture," Kansal said. "The reason why we keep it for four days is in case there is any issue, there is any complaint."

The hope is to reduce the number of reported violations by riders and drivers on the company's mask mandate. Some riders and drivers have already been banned for failing to comply with the company policy.

"If we find that riders or drivers have been in violation of the policy, we will first educate them," said Kansal. "We will send them emails. We want to make sure that they actually understand what the policy is. But if we see repeat violation, then we can take further action, including taking them off the platform."

Photo: Getty Images

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