In about 15 months, if the timetable holds, Uber will ask public investors to buy its shares. Dara Khosrowshahi, the car-booking company’s new CE, appears to be taking a kitchen-sink approach to getting bad news out well in advance. Yet the latest admission — that Uber covered up the theft by hackers of data from 50-million passengers and 7-million drivers — is so bad it is increasingly hard to see an unimpaired initial public offering in that time frame. Financial effects already exist from Uber’s serial moral failings: it has bled market share to rival Lyft. But the handling of the data breach puts it in another tier of jeopardy. From May 2018, a tough EU rule, the General Data Protection Regulation, will allow Brussels to levy fines of up to 4% of turnover if data are leaked. If Uber maintains its current growth rate, its annual net revenues should be $9bn — and the potential fine $360m. Gross bookings would make it five times higher. That is real money, even to the largest priva...

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