In perhaps the very shocking revelation of the year, the Chinese government are utilizing connected cars to continue to keep tabs on taxpayers.
A report from the Associated Press discovered over 200 automakers — including Tesla, Volkswagen, BMW, Daimler, Ford, General Motors, Nissan, and Mitsubishi — are still providing live data to Chinese authorities.
The automakers assert it’so to comply with national laws. Chinese officials do not deny that the data collection, but state it’s for analytic functions to improve things like public security and infrastructure planning.
Critics say that the data collection goes above and beyond what is necessary. Other major markets like the US, Europe, and Japan do not gather data to this extent.
A dedicated facility known as the Shanghai Electric Vehicle Public Data Collecting, Monitoring and Research Center includes a screen full of dots moving across Shanghai’s streets in real-time. Each dot can be clicked to get detailed info concerning the automobile to its remaining battery charge.
Such data may be used together with policing. To avoid lengthy and dangerous chases, by way of instance, a police vehicle could engage a defendant ’s automobile once it’s reduced battery — although it’s not difficult to foresee law enforcement being able to remotely disable connected cars.
In the Western world, this could all be a shock. Back in China, where net censorship and matters like facial recognition are simply a part of daily life, it’s much less so.
Nonetheless, it begs the question regarding whether automakers will be enticed to promoting certainly valuable user data to third-parties.
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