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Dec 9 2016

Fake Uber drivers target passengers at NYC airports

Uber is fighting to stop scammers from posing as company cab drivers at several New York City airports. Imposters are using clipboards and bogus signs for the ride-hailing service to lure travelers into their cars. According to the Better Business Bureau, people who seem distracted, tired or stressed have been particularly likely to fall victim to the scams.

Passengers leaving from LaGuardia and John F. Kennedy airports are vulnerable to identity theft and price gouging. Uber said the fake drivers have been stealing cash and credit card information from people before they use the app to request a ride. The drivers are allegedly colluding with fixers who linger near arrival areas and aggressively solicit passengers. It is illegal for drivers to schedule or accept rides at airports without using the official Uber app.

The company conducted a 15-day review of the situation at the two airports, saying it has “reached crisis levels.” They found that scammers are making as many as 2,300 illegal rides each week.

Uber filed an official complaint with the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, which manages the metro-area airports. Company spokesman Josh Mohrer wrote a letter requesting the department to investigate the problem, saying, “In recent weeks, the conditions at the terminal have noticeably worsened.”

Identity theft, credit card fraud and related crimes are serious charges that require skilled defense. An experienced attorney can fight on the accused person’s behalf to avoid jail time.