A criminal investigation is reportedly being taken on by the U.S. Department of Justice as regards the Uber data breach that occurred in May 2014.
The breach revealed the license plate numbers as well as the names of 50,000 drivers nationwide.
In Feb. 2015, Uber confirmed the breach, saying that the investigation revealed "a one-time unauthorized access to an Uber database." However, they have not received any reports about misuse of the breached information.
Consequently, Uber has provided a year's membership for Experian's® ProtectMyID® Alert for its driver partners and has filed a "John Doe" lawsuit to gather information about the third party's identity.
A report states that the current criminal investigation examines whether any employees at competitor Lyft, also a transportation network company, were involved in the event. The Uber investigation determined that an Internet address possibly connected to the breach can be traced to Chris Lambert, Lyft's technology chief.
Abraham Simmons, Department of Justice spokesman, said on Dec. 16 that he could neither confirm nor deny an investigation in relation to the Uber data breach.
"No one has been accused of any wrongdoing, and it is unclear whether anyone will ultimately be charged in connection with the breach," the report said.
Lambert's recently hired attorney, former federal prosecutor Miles Ehrlich, claimed that his client "had nothing to do" with the Uber breach.
Ehrlich acknowledged that due to the driver data loss, a law enforcement investigation was to be expected. The value of the investment is that the culprit will be determined which will disassociate Lambert's name to the issue, "as it should," Ehrlich said.
A Lyft representative said that no one representing the U.S. Attorney's office, Department of Justice or federal government agency has contacted them as regards an investigation.
"Our investigation into this matter was thorough, and there is no evidence that any Lyft employee, including Chris, downloaded the Uber driver information or database, or had anything to do with Uber's May 2014 data breach," the Lyft representative added.