Say No to Price Discrimination: Decentralized and Automated Incentives for Price Auditing in Ride-Hailing Services


Ride-hailing services, which are considered the most successful application of the sharing economy, are extremely popular all over the world and serve millions of customers each and every day. Typically, ride-hailing service providers (SPs) will request users' personal information in order to enhance their offerings through the utilization of Big Data technologies. However, SPs may also use the collected user data in order to apply personalized prices to various users, which raises concerns regarding price fairness. In this article, we propose a system for the intelligent auditing of prices that we call Spas. If a user chooses to purchase Fair Price Insurance from Spas in the form of a Price Auditing Contract, once the order for a ride-hailing service (RHS) has been fulfilled, the price of the order will be audited automatically. As a result of the auditing, the contract automatically punishes service providers who behave inappropriately and also compensates users who have been negatively impacted. We construct a decentralized price auditing system that is reliable and transparent by using carefully designed smart contracts to replace a centralized auditor that cannot be trusted. We demonstrate a theoretical model for practical payment flows by using data from actual RHS users, and we implement Spas in Hyperledger Fabric to demonstrate that it is technically possible to decentralize and automate price auditing for RHS while providing financial incentives.

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