Uber had managed to steer relatively clear of negative press over the last few months, after racking up a series of damaging headlines in 2014 and early 2015. Now the company is once again apologizing for failing to conduct a background check on a driver who falsified his permit. That driver is accused of sexually assaulting a female passenger.
The driver, 56-year-old Talal Chammout, had a prior weapons conviction that would have made him ineligible to drive for the company. This would have been clear with a simple background check, but none was performed.
Chammout started working with Uber in January 2014 through his family’s limo business, but he wasn’t listed as a driver, so he wasn’t vetted. That changed in April of this year, and Uber admits that he was “mistakenly granted access” because Chammout provided a fake driver permit number. [Keep your cool in a crisis with these 13 tips.]