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Uber Launches New Safety Features In Response To Student’s Tragic Murder

By Leah Freeman-Haskin

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Last month, 21-year-old University of South Carolina student Samantha Josephson was found dead after getting into a car she mistook for her Uber, according to police. Following her tragic death, Uber has recently announced plans to launch new safety features within the popular ride share app. 

“We are heartbroken about what has happened,” Uber’s chief legal and security officer said to TODAY. “For us, it’s a reminder that we have to constantly do everything we can to raise the bar on safety.”

RELATED: Black-Owned Restaurants In Myrtle Beach, South Carolina

West told NBC News that Uber will soon push out an alert system for riders to check the license plate, make and model of the vehicle — as well as the name and picture of the driver — to confirm it’s the correct person picking them up. He said the Uber app will also prominently display new safety notifications.

According to NBC News, the new alert system has already been launched in South Carolina and will be live across the rest of its user base in the coming days.

RELATED: Uber Launches New Rewards Program Where Users Gain Points And Cool Incentives

“In the app, when you’ve ordered your Uber, when it’s on the way, you will get more persistent, more frequent notifications, push notifications, to your phone that remind you to check your ride,” West said.

The ride share company will also work with universities across the country to set up dedicated pick-up zones on and off campus. 

Kelly Nantel, vice president of communications and advocacy at the National Safety Council supports these new initiatives saying, “The more information you can give to customers, the better. As ride-shares increase, I think it’s really important that riders have confidence not just in the safety of the vehicle, but also in their security. I think these are steps that move this industry in the right direction.”

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