Big Brother has found a new way to peek over your shoulder, if you worry about that kind of thing. The U.S government has set guidelines requiring an airplane-like black box to be installed in new cars. The recorder will note how fast you drive, when you hit the brakes, if and when your airbags deploy, and other data which should help recreate and understand accidents.
The issue that is obviously arising from the boxes is who gets to see what’s inside. Car makers want to see the data so that they can design safer cars. Fair enough. The problems arise when you consider that insurance companies could use the data to set insurance premiums, or cops could use it to incriminate the driver in a given situation.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says that the data can’t be downloaded without the owner’s permission, but conspiracy theorists can cite all sorts of cases where data has gotten in front of eyes it shouldn’t have.