Careem is a ride-hailing app operating in major urban areas in Pakistan along with another competitor Uber. Careem has honoured the drivers with the nomenclature of Careem Captains. However, there are reports that dozens of Captains were found involved in fraudulent activities; cheating Careem through means that were not allowed in the rule book.
According to details some Careem captains used to book rides at their own to meet targets and to qualify for the bonuses that company offers after achieving daily, weekly and monthly goals.
In other words these captains found a way of manipulating the system by going into such areas where chances of other captains on service are usually less and then booking a ride (from other than their primary smartphone). This way, the same captain used to get the same ride that they had booked themselves.
Although the same technique was not being used all the time but it was observed by Careem systems that such fake bookings were done when few final rides were needed before targets are missed due to the deadlines.
It was also seen that such bogus rides were also booked at the end of shift when captains were far away from home and then they are to ride back to their places anyway. In such circumstances captains used to book fake rides and then travel without any passenger but the ride would count towards their targets and hence the bonuses.
Sherlock by Careem
According to reports, Careem’s fraud detection system —Sherlock — was quick to identify such ghost rides and some 374 captains were flagged who were found involved in manipulating the system.
Careem has a mechanism to train its captains and briefs about consequences if found involved in any fraudulent activity. Consequently, Careem has taken severe actions against those Captains identifies by the system. Sources claim that IDs of over 50 captains have been blocked permanently whereas others were fined along with final warnings.
Careem has shared their point of view after the story broke by certain media by saying, “Careem believes in fair play and just rewards for our Captains. There is no tolerance for fraudulent practices which people use to try and deceive us. Fraud is a crime and they are only harming themselves as Careem’s systems are very good at picking up suspicious activities. It’s unfortunate that people resort to unfair means to make a bit of money, they only end up spoiling it for themselves as Careem can block them permanently and penalize them.”