Follow these safety tips when using ride-sharing apps

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – A late night or a drop-off at the airport, whatever the reason is, many of us have pulled out our phones and ordered a ride.

“I think people underestimate how many things can go wrong getting into Ubers,” said Gretchen Beatty, freshman at Butler University.

With the convenience of ride-sharing apps, customers must use caution.

“I think we all need to be more diligent before we get into that car to make sure we’ve done all the checking, everything we can do,” said Kathy Guider, Vice President of Veracity IIR.

Make sure your driver, the make and model of the car match the description and pictures.  Once you open the car door, the first thing you should say is, “Who are you here to pick up?’”  Never give out your name.

“When you provide the information, a bad guy can easily look at his phone and say ‘Yep, that’s it, that’s right, this is your car I’m your driver,’” said Guider.

Over the weekend, South Carolina college student Samantha Josephson was killed after she got into a car thinking it was her Uber ride.  Josephson’s body was later found, and police arrested the driver.

“It’s really scary because you can so easily see yourself in the same shoes,” said Lindsay Hiller, freshman at Butler University.

Another safety tip is to check the car’s child safety locks.  Most vehicles have the feature on the backseat doors.  There’s a little switch on the side of the door.  Make sure it’s unlocked so you aren’t trapped inside once the door shuts.

“They have the advantage. It’s their car.  You don’t know what devices, what tools, what weapons they have in that car,” said Guider.

Kathy Guider spent 23 years as an FBI agent.  Some of the best advice has been repeated over and over: Never go anywhere alone.

“Since we’ve been teenagers, we’ve been told about safety in numbers we need to keep following that same advice through our adult years,” said Guider.

Also, make sure you ride in the backseat which allows more space between you and the driver.

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