Is Your Car Spying on You?

car-spyingYou probably already know that when a plane crashes, the first thing the NTSB looks for are the black boxes.

These “Black boxes” or Flight Data Recorders (FDR), which in truth are not Black, hold all of the relevant data describing each command given, button pushed and lever moved. It further shows the effect that each action had on the craft. These boxes are the investigators greatest tool in understanding and recreating the events that caused the crash.

There are very few people that would ever suggest that we take the boxes out of planes. But cars are our own space. But this logic changes when the boxes are placed in our cars rather than commercial aircrafts or trains.

The truth is, the number of deaths connected to car crashes, is vastly higher than those that die each year from Plane or Train accidents combined. In fact with more than 40,000 motorists killed on the roads each year, supporters of the black boxes in cars, contend they give investigators and automakers an extensive database that can help them design better vehicle safety features and improved roads. Put till now car manufactures have not needed to disclose to buyers of their cars that they contained these devices.

Beginning with 2011, The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said automakers will need to disclose the existence of the technology in owner’s manuals. Little surprise that many people are upset to learn that their cars are secretly recording each and every move we make behind the wheel. We wash our cars, pay for them each month, insure them- they are ours. We don’t like the idea of them spying on us.

This is particularly true when we are not told up-front that the car we just bought has one of these boxes inside.

The hope is that the information gained. Will help save lives and also reduce the cost of car insurance. Bottom line, I want the car manufactures to have all of the information to improve the safety of the cars we drive, But please don’t do it behind our backs.

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