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Uber appoints Barney Harford as chief operating officer

Dec 20 (Reuters) - Uber Technologies Inc said said on Wednesday that the ride-hailing firm has appointed Barney Harford as chief operating officer, as the company looks to fill positions left vacant after key staff quit in recent months.

Harford, a former chief executive officer of online travel website Orbitz, will join Uber on Jan.2, Uber said in a statement. http://ubr.to/2Bmc6Pv

Uber is facing a host of problems, including allegations of sexual harassment, data privacy violations, and a criminal investigation over alleged trade-secrets theft. New CEO Dara Khosrowshahi, who replaced co-founder Travis Kalanick in August, has been critical of past practices and vowed a new era of compliance.

(Reporting by Aishwarya Venugopal in Bengaluru; Editing by Sayantani Ghosh)