Skip to content
  • Auditing Uber: Northeastern researchers test Uber’s ‘surge pricing’

    BetaBoston - 10/29/2015

    Christo Wilson admits there was something a little sketchy about going from drug store to drug store in downtown Boston last December, buying hundreds of dollars in prepaid Visa cards.

    But Wilson, an assistant computer science professor at Northeastern University, wasn’t laundering money: He was buying the cards to create fake Uber accounts that he and his colleagues would use to probe the ride-hailing app for supply and demand data. They’ll be presenting their findings this Friday at the 2015 Internet Measurement Conference in Tokyo.

    “Uber is a black box: They do not provide data about supply or demand, and prices are set dynamically by an opaque ‘surge pricing’ algorithm,” Wilson and his co-authors Le Chen and Alan Mislove wrote. “The lack of transparency has led to concerns about whether Uber artificially manipulate prices, and whether dynamic prices are fair to customers and drivers.”

  • Cookies on Northeastern sites

    This website uses cookies and similar technologies to understand your use of our website and give you a better experience. By continuing to use the site or closing this banner without changing your cookie settings, you agree to our use of cookies and other technologies. To find out more about our use of cookies and how to change your settings, please go to our Privacy Statement.