After a University of South Carolina student was allegedly killed by a man police say she mistook for her Uber driver, the president of the school is pleading with students who use the ride-sharing app.
Samantha Josephson's body was found Friday off a dirt road in a secluded, wooded area about 65 miles from Columbia. Police said she had climbed into the backseat of a stranger's car that she mistook for her Uber ride, and the driver likely stabbed her to death later on. Officials said the child locks in the car were activated, preventing Josephson from escaping the back of the vehicle.
University of South Carolina President Harris Pastides is launching a nationwide "What's My Name" campaign, pleading with students to be vigilant when going out at night and scheduling rides home.
"In Samantha's memory, I ask you to embrace a new pledge," he said in a statement. "Ask the driver, 'What's my name?' If he doesn't say your name, do not get into the vehicle."
In a note to the University of South Carolina, Pastides reminded people to "travel in groups, stay together and stay in well-lit areas."
He also warned people to "exercise best practices when using services like Uber and Lyft: Look for clearly marked vehicles that match the description and license plate number in your app."
Pastides encouraged students to download the RAVE Guardian safety app, which allows users to send confidential tips on unsafe situations or suspicious behavior and discreetly call 911 with the push of a button.
Meanwhile, security expert Steve Kardian hit the streets to see how customers are interacting with their Uber drivers. He said people are already being more vigilant.
When a car pulled up in front of one woman, she first compared the car's make and model, as well as its license plate number, to what was listed in her app. When she realized it wasn't the correct car, she moved on. She told Inside Edition that using Uber is about exercising "common sense."