With the help of Derek Robertson
Cars are collecting more data than ever, fueling a new breed of data broker. While vehicle safety is strictly regulated, vehicle data is not. And privacy advocates fear that connected cars could overwhelm legislators, as could the unregulated collection of vast amounts of data by smartphones.
Cars are capable of collecting data on almost every aspect of a journey, from road conditions to whether or not you put on weight since you were last in the driver’s seat. If you connect your phone to the car’s Bluetooth system, that’s it too able to know your contacts.
And while most of the data cars collect is related to the vehicle itself, like engine temperature or tire pressure, there’s a growing market for more personal driver data, like driver name and location, driven by industries like insurance, marketing, and car repairs.
“There is significant potential for applications that use anonymous data, but there is far greater market potential in applications involving personal data,” said Frederic Bruneteau, managing director of Ptolemus Consulting Group, a strategy firm that advises on connected mobility. “The need for efficient consent management is critical.”
Car location data is some of the most valuable that automakers can collect, and data brokers who obtain this information have claimed it is far more accurate and rich than phone data. according to marketing material.
It’s also harder for consumers to opt out of sharing their location data from a car, privacy advocates say. While you can deny permissions for a mobile app that wants to know your location, in the case of a car, that can mean you don’t have map services or roadside assistance.
While today only about half of all new cars sold have an internet connection, McKinsey estimates that by 2030, around 95 percent of new cars will be networked. This influx of data collection has spawned a new industry of data brokers called Vehicle Data Hubswho specialize in collecting and selling vehicle data to clients such as insurance companies, urban planners and advertisers.
Automakers are considering using the technology to serve ads Dashboards when driving past specific billboardsand vehicle data brokers are already offering to use it Vehicle data to adjust insurance rates. Privacy advocates fear that if all of these systems are entrenched before regulations rein in, lawmakers will have a much harder time protecting people’s information.
So the legislature is fighting to set the rules for vehicle data.
In the US, there are privacy laws for vehicle data, such as Driver Privacy Actwhich was adopted in 2015. The law stipulates that any data collected on a car’s Event Data Recorder, a type of black box designed to help diagnose malfunctions and accidents, belongs to the car owner and requires consent or a search warrant for that data from be used by third parties.
But for connected cars, the EDR accounts for only a small portion of the data collected. No federal laws protecting driver privacy have been passed since 2015, giving automakers the ability to collect and sell location data from drivers once they’ve opted in for services like GPS and roadside assistance.
“We think it’s overdue to update the Driver Privacy Act,” said Andrea Amico, founder of Privacy4Cars, a privacy technology company specializing in cars. Friend warns that infotainment systems collect at least as much data as the EDR and that it can be extracted without a search warrant.
Industry groups are also trying to weaken privacy regulations.
In June 2020, the Alliance for Automotive Innovation Recommendations for data protection regulations made to the Uniform Law Commission. In the letter, the industry group recommended changing the definition of “personal data” to exclude “pseudonymised data” from which names have been stripped. Even though use data brokers With a lot of such data, it is often relatively easy to “de-anonymize” it and find out which pseudonym corresponds to which real person.
Though Congress hasn’t passed any new legislation specifically for cars, lawmakers are pushing for one broader data protection law that covers a wide range of data, no matter what type of device collects it. The bill passed the committee on July 20, but is unlikely to go into effect without the support of Senate Commerce Committee Chair Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.). It specifically requires automakers to obtain “affirmative express consent” to collect data for specific purposes.
Without this kind of regulation, automakers are free to demand access to data for life-saving purposes like roadside assistance, while still using the same data for profit.
“The problem is, once you agree, which consumers don’t realize, is you’re also agreeing to the same data, your up-to-the-second geolocation data, your medical profile, anything car-related is essentially available to someone else Purpose,” Amico said.
This strategy comes from the same playbook that mobile apps have used for years: when a user grants data permissions to make an app work, it can open the door for an entire data broker ecosystem to trade your information back and forth. It’s like Data from Muslim prayer appsthat need location data to guide people towards Mecca ended up in the hands of the US military.
As Friend puts it, “A lot of us have a romantic notion that cars are places of anonymity and freedom. It’s time for Congress to realize that’s no longer the case.”
Stablecoins have come under a lot of scrutiny lately, with the Federal Reserve extremely tightening its oversight among some high profile crashes.
But a stablecoin provider is active to attempt to garner some attention – Circle, a Boston-based company whose confusingly named “US Dollar Coin” built second highest stablecoin market cap to Tether. in a (n Interview published today Joining POLITICO’s Peter O’Brien and Bjarke Smith-Meyer for pro subscribers, the company’s Chief Strategy Officer Dante Disparte said it “sets its sights on just a third-place finish behind Bitcoin and Ether” in the crypto market.
Stablecoins peg their value to the US dollar by backing it with traditional currency, US Treasuries, or commodities. This makes withdrawals easy and offers a more stable investment, but just like non-crypto securities, their underlying assets are still vulnerable to unsettled weather.
That’s exactly what Disparte touts as a benefit of USDC: He labeled it an establishment-friendly stablecoin and told Peter and Bjarke that “many, if not all, of the current generation of so-called stablecoins can’t even come close to matching it.” [its] Level of trust, transparency, regulatory certainty.” For its part, Tether shot back, saying Circle’s “unprofitable business model” makes it a risky bet. – Derek Robertson
Last week us covered the turbulence captivating the world of VRChat, one of the most popular fully 3D, VR based virtual worlds.
A film released on HBO’s streaming service Wednesday offers an up-close and personal snapshot of the status quo its most dedicated users are trying to protect — “We met in virtual reality, “A feature-length documentary shot entirely within the game itself. The film’s director, Joe Hunting, follows some of the game’s most dedicated users as they dance, celebrate the holidays, process real-life trauma, and even “marry” within the hyperkinetic confines of the day-glo anime-style game.
in the an interview As well as joking with website GameRant about being “one of the few documentary film directors who could shoot their film entirely in their pyjamas,” Hunting also described how the film has been surpassed by the Covid-19 pandemic and the contagion of social and social life that has accompanied it social media was inspired emotional life in a digital space.
He also argues that the most common misconception about VR users is that they spend too much time there, at the expense of their daily lives. Midst loads of evidence With VR usage increasing significantly during the pandemic, Hunting’s snap could be a taste of the kind of virtual entanglements that could soon co-exist with our analog ones. – Derek Robertson
Keep in touch with the whole team: Ben Schreckinger ([email protected]); Derek Robertson ([email protected]); Konstantin Kakaes ([email protected]); and Heidi Vogt ([email protected]). Follow us on Twitter @DigitalFuture.
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