Federal prosecutors have charged Uber’s former security chief, Joseph Sullivan, with obstruction of justice for attempting to hide the company’s 2016 data breach from the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). The hack exposed the email addresses and phone numbers of 57 million Uber drivers and customers.
Instead of disclosing the breach to the FTC, which was investigating an earlier 2014 hack into Uber, Sullivan allegedly paid the culprits $100,000 in bitcoin. The Justice Department says the former executive tried to pay the hackers through Uber’s bug bounty program. He also attempted to convince them to sign nondisclosure agreements. Uber later fired Sullivan in 2017 when the company’s current CEO, Dara Khosrowshahi, found out about how he had handled the situation.