Wiretaps On Wheels: How Is Your Car Collecting And Selling Your Personal Data?Safety Info September 18, 2023 0 COMMENTS
Recently, there’s been a buzz around automobile manufacturers selling your personal information, while some say they would share it with government authorities even without a court order.
With the increase in the number of sensors like telematics or fully digitized consoles, this gesture of capturing the personal data of users is on the rise.
Read on to delve into the various ways automakers are finding ways to be transparent about data collection while staying relevant to the latest technology. You can even consult Mission Viejo auto accident attorney in case you need any legal consultation.
While vehicles with their “accessories” like sensors easily capture the data, the drivers have almost no control over it. According to the nonprofit Mozilla Foundation, there are no clear security standards, and it concerns the carmakers’ susceptibility to hacking.
Other aspects of concern relate to sensitive conversations between people captured by the microphones in the cars. Similarly, the cameras facing inwards and outwards are a serious threat as the passengers keep moving. As per the studies by Mozilla, cars were considered a concern for privacy on other parameters such as reproductive health apps, smart speakers, and other home appliances.
The study reveals that nineteen automakers say they can expose your data according to their notices. Half of them claim they can share their information with government authorities on a request, even without a court order.
While the automakers are reluctant to disclose to whom they sell your information, the researchers doubt that it could be to data brokers, marketers, and dealers. In addition, partners of installed products or services, including Google Maps and Onstar, are also capitalizing on the data.
Albert Fox Cahn, a technology and human rights fellow at Harvard’s Carr Center for Human Rights Policy, said, “Increasingly, most cars are wiretaps on wheels. The electronics that drivers pay more and more money to install are collecting more and more data on them and their passengers.”
He added, “There is something uniquely invasive about transforming the privacy of one’s car into a corporate surveillance space.”
A trade group representing the interests of carmakers in the U.S. presented a letter to the U.S. House and Senate Leadership expressing its goal of protecting customers’ privacy. The group requested a federal privacy law as a combination of various state laws causes confusion among customers and makes compliance difficult.
In the absence of such laws, the electronic devices capture all the personal information collected and used by various players while also exposing it to cybersecurity breaches.
With regard to this, the Associated Press asked the Alliance whether it allows the customers to completely opt out of data collection and grants them permission to have the data deleted.
The response was that while customers completely opting out may pose safety concerns, it certainly gives them the privilege to make decisions on how the data should be used in Marketing or by third parties. If you wish to delve into the legal implications associated with it, it is advisable to reach out to a Mission Viejo auto accident attorney.
According to a Pew Research survey, 52% of Americans were wary of using a product or service that would collect their personal information.
Japanese automaker Nissan surprised the researchers with a detailed breakdown of its privacy collection document. It expressed that privacy information included sensitive details like driver’s license, immigration status, race, and sexual orientation.
In addition, Nissan says it can share various insights such as consumer preferences, behavior, attitudes, intelligence, and abilities.
However, neither Nissan nor Tesla responded to any questions on their practices.
Mozilla’s Caltrider introduced laws in the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation or California’s Consumer Privacy Act to force carmakers to explicitly provide all existing data collected.
She says it’s just the beginning and compares it to the 2010’s evolution of surveillance-based displays, which was the result of a consumer backlash.