Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Your Automobile is Very Likely Spying on You

...but Republicans and Democrats in the U.S. Senate are uniting to put a stop to unfettered snooping via the "black boxes," or "event data recorders," placed in your car by automakers. 

Is your car spying on you? If the vehicle is a fairly new model it probably is, thanks to a "black box" that collects data about what’s going on in your car. And there’s no off switch or way to opt out. By September all new cars sold in the United States will be required to have black boxes, or as they’re more formally called, "event data recorders."

"The amount of data that they record is vast. And it's not capped," said Nate Cardozo, a staff attorney with the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF).

That’s just one way new technology installed in automobiles is invading our privacy. At the 2014 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) last week, Google and a handful of automobile manufacturers, including Audi, GM, Honda and Hyundai, announced a partnership designed to bring the Android mobile platform to vehicles. Those devices are capable of broadcasting your location, Web pages you may have looked at, stores you shopped in and much much more. Chevrolet, for example, showed off a camera mounted on the windshield that records the driver’s point of view and a microphone in the cabin records any noises made in the car.

...Consider what Ford’s top sales guy James Farley said at a CES event: "We know everyone who breaks the law. We know when you’re doing it. We have GPS in your car, so we know what you’re doing." Farley quickly retracted his impolitic remarks, but they give you insight into how seriously some automakers take your privacy. (more)

Is your car bugged?
See if you are on the list.
If so, read this