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Uber will begin tracking your location while running in the background

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Your privacy is now arriving

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An upcoming update to Uber's privacy policy will ask riders for permission to track their location while running in the background, a move the company says will enable it to "get people on their way more quickly." The changes, which go into effect July 15th, also ask you to share your contacts with Uber — a move that will let the company send "special offers" to your friends and family, Uber said in a blog post. The company also posted complete descriptions of the permissions it is seeking for both Android and iOS.

The moves come after a number of privacy-related missteps at the company, including giving employees wide access to an all-seeing "god view" and posting data about users' "rides of glory" — trips taken to and from presumed hookups. In a welcome move, background tracking and contact-sharing will be optional for users. If you do opt in, Uber will not store a record of your movements, the company said.

The changes came after a review of Uber's privacy policy by law firm Hogan Lovells, which helped the company write a policy half as long and easier to understand, according to the company. The company also set up an email address to answer your privacy questions: privacy@uber.com.