Car2Go 'hack': Rental company suspends Chicago service after ‘as many as 100 high-end vehicles’ subject to fraud

Clark Mindock

The short-term car rental service Car2Go has suspended its services in Chicago after “a fraud issue” that has been described in reports as cars essentially being stolen.

Local media in Chicago have reported that the car sharing service was suspended after vehicles were essentially commandeered by individuals misusing the app.

Car2Go has indicated that no personal or bank information was stolen during the incidents, and that the suspension of services did not extend outside of the Chicago market.

A reporter for a CBS News station in Chicago tweeted that “as many as 100” high end cars including Mercedes may have been stolen during the incidents of fraud.

“We are currently working with law enforcement to neutralize a fraud issue. No “hack” took place. No personal or confidential member information has been compromised,” a spokesperson for Car2Go said, noting that further details were unavailable because an investigation was ongoing. “Out of an abundance of caution and safety for our members we are temporarily pausing our Chicago service.”

The Car2Go fleet includes Mercedes-Benz GLA-Class, CLA-Class and the Smart Fortwo.

“The Chicago police department was alerted by a car rental company that some of their vehicles may have been rented by deceptive or fraudulent mean through a mobile app. Due to the information provided by the company, numerous vehicle have been recovered and persons of interest are being questioned,” the police force said.

“The Chicago police department is working with the company to determine whether there are any other vehicles whose locations cannot be accounted for. At this time the recoveries appear to be isolated to the West Side. The investigation is ongoing. Due to information provided by the company, numerous vehicles have been recovered and persons of interest are being questioned,” the statement continued.

It is likely that the company would be able to remotely disable the vehicles.

Users of Car2Go are able to rent their vehicles for short periods of time by logging into the app, and selecting vehicles from spots where they are parked on the street or in select parking lots around the city.