Uber escaped spy scandal. Not their profession.

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The relationship was tense, Mr. Jicinto recalled, and the two seemed embarrassed to share leadership.

However, their work went fast. The team, which includes dozens of employees, wanted to keep track of Uber’s competitors overseas, whether they were taxi drivers or executives at the Chinese right-hailing company DT. But they need to protect their own administrators from monitoring web-scraping operations that use automated systems to gather information about Uber’s pricing and driver supply.

It was a huge task. To continue, the team outsourced some projects to intelligence agencies, which sent contractors to infiltrate the driving resistance. Other work was done at home as Uber developed its own scraping system to collect large-scale competitor data. The removal of public data is legal, but the law restricts the use of such data for commercial purposes.

The team rushed to hire more staff, and Mr. Jizinto appointed people he knew from his time in the CIA: fellow agent Ed Russo and former agent of the Naval Intelligence Service Jack Nogan, Mr. When I met Jicinto. They worked for the Joint Terrorist Task Force in San Diego.

When Didi’s CEO Jean-Liu went to the Bay Area, Uber tailed her. At the time, Uber’s chief executive Travis Callanic was on his way to Beijing when staff tried to overthrow Didi’s monitoring committees. Colonel’s phones were shuttled to other hotels so his location would ping where he was not.

“For us, every drop of this was a game to help our executives hold their meetings without revealing who they are meeting,” said Mr Uber, who led Uber’s global threat operations. Henley said. “It was a lot of fun, wasn’t it? It’s a cat-and-mouse game that goes back and forth. “

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