Uber May Soon Use ‘Real-Time ID Check’ To Verify If Drivers Are Wearing Masks

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Uber might use its selfie system that it first implemented for identity verification of its drivers to check if drivers are following safety protocols by wearing masks.

Uber is making it compulsory for drivers and riders in certain countries to wear face masks as it is on the cusp to start functioning again. According to TechCrunch, Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi wants to use the platform’s selfie technology “to make sure that the driver is wearing a mask where appropriate.”

Introduced by the ride-hailing giant in 2016, Real-Time ID Check is a safety feature that will periodically ask drivers to take a selfie with the Uber app. These selfies are then crosschecked through Microsoft’s Cognitive Services to confirm the driver’s identity. The feature was implemented for rider’s security and now, it might be used for something more amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Wearing a mask has been one of the most recommended ways to limit the spread of COVID-19 in situations where social distancing is not possible. The implementation of a face mask policy by Uber on its riders and drivers was initially reported by CNN Business based on information from an anonymous source. While it was described to be implemented in the U.S. and several other countries, a list of regions has not been revealed yet.

In various markets, Uber has taken measures against COVID-19 by suggesting riders to stay at home if they’re feeling sick and even focus on Uber Eats. In India, Uber worked with the National Health Authority to provide free rides for healthcare workers in various cities and also delivered essential products with Flipkart.

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