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What you need to know about the latest Uber lawsuit and how to protect yourself




San Francisco district attorney George Gascon speaks during a new conference to announce a civil consumer protection action against rideshare company Uber on December 9, 2014 in San Francisco, California. Gascon, along with Los Angeles district attorney Jackie Lacey, announced the filing of a civil consumer protection action against Uber Technologies Inc. for making false and misleading statements to consumers and for engaging in business practices that violate California State law.
San Francisco district attorney George Gascon speaks during a new conference to announce a civil consumer protection action against rideshare company Uber on December 9, 2014 in San Francisco, California. Gascon, along with Los Angeles district attorney Jackie Lacey, announced the filing of a civil consumer protection action against Uber Technologies Inc. for making false and misleading statements to consumers and for engaging in business practices that violate California State law.
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Attorneys with the District Attorney’s Offices in Los Angeles and San Francisco filed a lawsuit on Tuesday against the popular ride-sharing service, Uber, saying that the company misrepresents its safety and background check practices and overcharges customers for rides. The DA’s offices are also accusing Uber of fraud for charging a $4 fee for customers who request a ride to the airport even when the drivers weren’t paying the toll.

Another popular ride-sharing service, Lyft, settled with prosecutors and agreed to “play by the rules.” They will also have to pay a $500,000 fine and have said they will stop picking up customers from the airport until they get the permits and approvals needed.

Los Angeles district attorney Jackie Lacey said in a press conference this week that their aim is not to shut Uber down, but to get them to change their advertising, which the DA’s office says is false. Despite the lawsuit, Uber will be allowed to keep operating as normal. Uber said in a statement that it is in negotiations with the district attorneys' offices, but Los Angeles D.A. Jackie Lacey told KPCC's Take Two that Uber is not in contact with the D.A.'s offices and that she hopes they do reach out.

How much do you think ride-sharing services like Uber and Lyft should be regulated? Do you think Uber is misleading its customers about the safety of its service and drivers? How do you keep yourself safe when using ride-sharing services like Uber and Lyft?

Guests: 

George Gascón, District Attorney, City & County of San Francisco which filed a lawsuit yesterday against Uber

Carolyn Said, business and technology reporter for the San Francisco Chronicle, she covers the so-called “sharing economy” and has been following the Uber saga as it has unfolded

Thilo Koslowski, vice president and automotive practice leader at the technology analysis firm Gartner.