At what point does paranoia become reality? How about when the predictably named “Moving Ahead For Progress in the 21st Century Act,” also known as Senate Bill 1813 passes the House. (See here for the full text of the bill itself; the relevant section is 31406.)
If/when passed the bill will impose a legal requirement that all new cars made beginning with the 2015 models be fitted with so-called Event Data Recorders (EDRs). These are the “black boxes” you may have read about that store data about how you drive – including whether you wear a seat belt and how fast you drive – ostensibly for purposes of post-accident investigation.
The question arises: why? Well for one, the EDRs could – and almost certainly will be – tied into your vehicle’s GPS. (Most new and late model cars, conveniently, already have this, too.) Then data about your driving can be transmitted – as well as recorded. To whom? Your insurance company, of course. Progressive Insurance already has such a system in place – voluntary, for the moment. (See here for more on that.)
When EDRs are mandated, you will no longer have a choice.
We’ll be told it’s all for the sake of (groan) “safety” – just like the old 55 MPH highway speed limit and every radar trap in the country. Of course, it’s really for the sake of revenue – the government’s and the insurance company’s. Your rates will be “adjusted” in real time, for every incident of “speeding” or not buckling up. It’ll be so much more efficient than using cops to issue tickets. After all, so many fishes escape! With an EDR in every car, no one will escape. Your “adjusted” premium will be waiting for you when you get home.
Now isn't that convenient.....but for whom?