The court case concerns three drivers from the UK and one from Portugal. They say they have been dismissed from Uber after being accused of ‘fraudulent activity’ by the Uber algorithm.
The four, who filed a lawsuit against Uber and filed a complaint with the Amsterdam court on Monday morning, say that a dismissal decision cannot be taken automatically according to European privacy law, the NOS reports.
The drivers say they have not committed fraud. According to Uber, fraud occurs if, for example, a driver rejects a customer, or if a driver logs out strategically in order to increase fares. Uber would never have given the drivers an explanation for the dismissal. Nor could they object.
Under European privacy law, algorithms are not allowed to determine whether or not an employee should be fired. That decision must be made by a human.
An Uber representative commented in a response to Nu.nl: ‘Uber provides requested personal data and information that individuals are entitled to. We provide a statement when we are unable to provide certain information, such as information that does not exist or if its disclosure violates another person’s rights under the GDPR. As part of our regular processes, the partner drivers in this case became deactivated after manual review by our specialist team.’
The use of algorithms at Uber has come under scrutiny before. In July, two British Uber drivers also filed a lawsuit against the taxi company. They wanted to know what information was collected about them and how data was used to make decisions about them.