A report by the Mozilla Foundation has raised concerns about the extent of personal data collection by car manufacturers.
About the report: Mozilla’s “Privacy Not Included” report is a buyer’s guide launched in 2017 that focuses on reviewing users’ privacy.
In their latest report, researchers assessed 25 automobile brands and concluded that every single one of them fell short in terms of consumer privacy. The report underscores the lack of control users have over their personal data, a concern amplified as cars become increasingly connected to the internet.
Monetizing your data: Based on their findings, 84% of the car companies assessed admit to sharing or selling the data they collect, effectively monetizing users’ personal information without their explicit consent. The data gathered ranges from sensitive medical and genetic information to other details like driving speed, locations visited and even the music drivers listen to.
How data is collected: Modern vehicle models are now equipped to collect data automatically, including GPS location and driver habits. The report notes that low public awareness and lax data privacy laws in the U.S. are enabling manufacturers to collect as much data as they can.
Privacy rankings: European brands Renault and Dacia ranked first and second, respectively, in the assessment, mainly due to the more stringent General Data Protection Regulation governing data privacy in Europe. Tesla, which ranked at the bottom, received “Privacy Not Included” warnings in every privacy category of the report.
Researchers highlighted previous concerns that arose from the company’s outward-facing cameras, which reportedly shared videos and images recorded by the cameras in customers’ cars over internal chat systems within the company. Its AI-powered autopilot was also highlighted as “untrustworthy” due to the number of crashes and fatalities it was involved in.
were notable for explicitly mentioning that they collect information related to users’ sexual activity in their privacy policies.