Forth Coming Papers

Emerging Security Risks of e-hail Transport Services: Focus on Uber Taxi in Nairobi, Kenya
Cosmas Ekwom Kamais, Department of Peace, Security and Social Studies, Egerton University, Kenya

This study attempted to examine the emerging security risks brought about by the e-hail taxi mode of transportation. It argues that despite the fact that the security risks associated with traditional taxi transportation still apply to e-hail taxi services, there are emergent risks that are unique to the app-based taxi hailing services. It further contends that as evidenced by the reactionary way of addressing security issues arising form usage of the service, it is clear that security was not a factor during conceptualisations, development and operation of the app-based taxi service. The study conducted a survey of uber customers and drivers in Nairobi County Kenya, and data was collected from 400 respondents with 85% response rate. Majority of the respondents indicated that they somewhat often (32.23%), agreed that Uber is more convenient (58.76%), indicated that Uber offers more business and job opportunities (86.46%). Despite the positive opinions by the respondents, 65.31% opined that Uber portend security risks. Majority indicated that the following risks are likely; abductions (40.82%), carjacking (40.82%), sexual harassment (38.14%), murders (35.71%), robbery (41.84%) and burglaries (34.69%). However, a majority of 28.57% thought that hackings into sensitive customer and company data was less likely. Furthermore, 57.14% of the respondents felt that the regulatory framework for app-based taxi hailing system were not sufficient to guarantee safety and security while 75.51% were optimistic that the e-hail transport industry will take meaningful security mitigation measures from the lessons they have learned. Finally, 92.93% of the respondents felt that government authorities should do more in regulating app-based services such Uber while 85.86% opined that founders and managers of e-hail taxi services should be held responsible for security lapses. The study recommends that a review of existing traffic laws and criminal laws be done to take care of the emerging security risks associated by app-based service providers.

e-hail Taxi, app-based, Uber, Transport, Security Risks, Convenience, Information Technology, collaborative economy.