How Perfect......Even My Car Spies On Me

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How Perfect......Even My Car Spies On Me

Explained by Freeranger...

So what's next......your refrigerator?

From Hot Air:

Back in the 80s, some pop band put out an earworm of a tune with the refrain, “I always feel like somebody’s watching me.” That may not mean that you’re paranoid, though, because the odds are that somebody actually is watching you. But it’s not a person in this case… it’s your car. While I was aware that certain bits of data were probably being used and possibly even stored in modern car computers, this article from Peter Holley at the Washington Post exposes the extent of the data collection and distribution going on.

The example they focus on is a guy named Daniel Dunn who leased a Honda in California in 2017 and noticed that his contract included an agreement that the company could track the location of his vehicle using the onboard GPS system. While Dunn agreed to it and has “made peace with the idea,” the amount of data that Honda can not only collect but sell on the open market, is more than a bit disturbing.

Though drivers may not realize it, tens of millions of American cars are being monitored like Dunn’s, experts say, and the number increases with nearly every new vehicle that is leased or sold.

The result is that carmakers have turned on a powerful spigot of precious personal data, often without owners’ knowledge, transforming the automobile from a machine that helps us travel to a sophisticated computer on wheels that offers even more access to our personal habits and behaviors than smartphones do.

“The thing that car manufacturers realize now is that they’re not only hardware companies anymore — they’re software companies,” said Lisa Joy Rosner, chief marketing officer of Otonomo, a company that sells connected-car data, sharing the profits with automakers. “The first space shuttle contained 500,000 lines of software code, but compare that to Ford’s projection that by 2020 their vehicles will contain 100 million lines of code. These vehicles are becoming turbocharged spaceships if you think of them from a purely horsepower perspective.”

What sort of data can the manufacturer assemble from your GPS? They can hone in on your driving habits, how often you exceed the speed limit, where you like to shop or go out to eat… and all of that information is tied to your real name, financial data and contact information. This might have remained one of those stories which only suggests possible bad behavior were it not for the fact that the WaPo is quoting somebody from a data firm which is already selling this information to advertisers and splitting the profits with the automakers.

Where else might that data go? We’ve been following a number of stories involving Supreme Court cases asking whether or not law enforcement can access data about your movement from your cell phone provider. It sounds like they could do the same thing using the stored GPS info in your car if they contact the manufacturer. For the record, I’m not opposed to law enforcement doing that if they have a warrant, but selling off a record of your movements to telemarketers is fairly outrageous.

So your phone and your car are both spying on everything you do and ratting you out. At this point I can’t blame you if you’re wondering… what next? No need to wait, citizens. The answer is already here. Thanks to the Internet of Things, your refrigerator is already tracking what you’re doing and will be preemptively preparing shopping lists and menus for you. What’s the harm, right? I mean, it’s just going to help you avoid drinking spoiled milk. But if it knows what you’re buying and how often, don’t you think there would be a buyer for that data as well?

Sleep tight, boys and girls.

+113 Reply

Freeranger Freeranger OP

It's spooky, scary and wrong.
Proposal - Since I'm paying for my car and refrigerator and phone and TV and computer and....., I want to know where the switch is to turn that crap off.

+112 Reply

Budwick Budwick

In response to “It's spooky, scary and wrong. Proposal -...

from what I understand, it's against the law to tamper with it. Just like the black box in your car (some are under your seat) that records your driving habits; acceleration and braking. Those get turned over to your insurance company in the event of an accident so that they don't have to pay out to you.
Btw.....tape that hole over your widescreen t.v. Bud....they watch you through it......they can also eavesdrop. Creepy shizz indeedy.

01 Reply

Freeranger Freeranger OP

I completely agree.

What troubles me is that these seem to be our only choices: let companies and the government collect data on us without a warrant, or become troglodytes.

+111 Reply

PhilboydStudge PhilboydStudge

In response to “I completely agree. What troubles me is...

I think I prefer being a troglodyte.

+111 Reply

Budwick Budwick

Last I knew, manufacturers retained the copyright for software on the vehicles today. So you may buy the car, but never completely own it.

The amount of data collected on us today is mind-bogglingly phenomenal. Smartphones, cars, smart TVs, smart appliances, smart homes, and smart meters. Almost everything is now chipped and your smart meter can determine what you are using inside your home. While smart TVs "listen" to you and send the recordings to third parties. If you disable the recording, it still sends transcripts of your discussions from my understanding. It also watches you and uses facial recognition. Think how many people have these in their bedrooms and their children's bedrooms! Your smartphone's audio and video can be turned on without your knowledge.

Everyone is aware of Google's and FB's invasive data collection, but Twitter now states they will ban people for their actions and associations outside of Twitter. Current and former employees were also recently caught on hidden camera admitting they read your messages and save everyone's private (ahem) pictures in their database. Amazon is even worse. I am unsure about Apple, but imagine they are just as bad.

There are also store loyalty cards, and RFID in product tags, the massive switch to using credit/debit cards, RFID in Real ID cards and passports...and the list keeps growing.

+11 Reply

Bozette Bozette

In response to “Last I knew, manufacturers retained the...

so the lesson kids is: don't buy anything you can't pay cash for, use a rotary phone, go retro and buy that boxy old t.v., and drive a '60's classic auto,

+11 Reply

Freeranger Freeranger OP

In response to “so the lesson kids is: don't buy anything...

The lesson is there are two choices: One can become informed and opt-in/out to their level of comfort on most things, otherwise using mitigation...or one can, in blissful ignorance, happily cede all privacy and eagerly offer their most sensitive information to governments, megacorps, geek tech developers, hackers, and whoever else they wish to sell your data to or are careless enough to lose/allow your data to be stolen/found by. Foolishly, few will choose option one.

0 Reply

Bozette Bozette

In response to “The lesson is there are two choices: One can...

a fairly large percentage cede without knowing

0 Reply

Freeranger Freeranger OP

In response to “a fairly large percentage cede without knowing

While that may be true, it's not as if many security breaches and questionable data-mining practices haven't been reported on, even in the MSM. I think most are ignorant as to the extent of it, but one would have to be deaf, dumb, blind, and living totally off-grid in BFE to be completely unawares. And once one has an inkling it is happening, they might just do a little digging themselves. In the meantime you and I and others will continue to post about these things...what people do with that information is up to them.

0 Reply

Bozette Bozette

I'm not completely off the grid, damn close.....

I can relate to fox

0 Reply

Neanderthal_Momdoer Neanderthal_Momdoer

Courts have already used records from car computers as evidence. If you go to a car dealer and ask for a copy of the programming, they will tell you rather angrily that it is none of your business.

The same is true of breath analyzers in DUI cases. If you subpoena the programming of the analyzer, the company will reply that it is none of your business and the court has to throw the case out.

0 Reply

that_guy that_guy

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