Uber just hired its first-ever chief privacy officer

By Steven Melendez

July 18, 2018

Uber is enlisting Ruby Zefo, Intel’s chief privacy and security officer, as its first-ever chief privacy officer, reports the International Association of Privacy Professionals. Zefo is also a member of that organization’s board.

The company is also bringing in Simon Hania, previously VP of privacy and security at navigation company TomTom, to serve as its data protection officer, a position required under Europe’s General Data Protection Regulation. A Dutch firm currently fills that role on an interim basis, according to IAPP.

Both will report to Tony West, Uber’s chief legal officer.

West announced the hires in a message to employees shared with Fast Company:

Ruby Zefo will join us on August 6 as Uber’s Chief Privacy Officer (CPO), based in San Francisco and reporting to me. She fills a critical global role responsible for the development and implementation of privacy standards, procedures, and processes in every market where we operate. Ruby comes to us after many years at Intel where she was Chief Privacy & Security Counsel, leading their global privacy and security legal team. She brings deep expertise in building global privacy programs and governance frameworks in high tech. She is also heavily engaged in the privacy community and serves on the Board of Directors for the International Association of Privacy Professionals (IAPP).

Privacy has long been a concern for many Uber customers and, particularly under founding CEO Travis Kalanick, the company didn’t have the best reputation for protecting it. Uber reportedly had an internal “God View” that let high-ranking employees view ride histories and real-time travels, and Uber executives were alleged to have obtained medical records about a woman allegedly raped by an Uber driver in India.