As part Uber’s strategy to beef up the safety of its riders, the company is offering users a four-digit PIN code to assist in ensuring that they board into the right car.
The ride-hailing company is rolling out the new feature across the U.S. and riders will be able to use the PIN codes to identify the right drivers to navigate them as well as to ensure that there is no impersonation of these drivers.
This follows the death of 21-year-old Samantha Josephson, who was murdered in March last year after getting into the car of a man that claimed to be an Uber driver.
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How the Uber PIN codes works
With the new feature, when a rider requests for a ride, Uber sends them a four-digit PIN code. Then, as the rider gets into the car – or even before that, they tell the driver the code.
The driver is required to enter the PIN code into the app, and the rider gets a notification that says “your ride is verified” if everything matches.
Riders can choose whether or not to use Uber’s new PIN code feature, or whether to choose and use it only at night. Uber and Lyft have been experimenting with pin codes in some cities to facilitate airport pickups.
For safety purposes, various U.S. states have been pushing for additional safety requirements for Uber drivers. In New Jersey, ride-hailing drivers are required to display identification signs on the car’s front windshield and rear window. Also, North Carolina passed a law requiring Uber and Lyft drivers to display lighted signs.