To buy a new car in 2023 is to jump into a privacy nightmare, reports the Mozilla Foundation. The heavily-computerized and connected modern vehicles constantly collect and promiscuously share personal information, location and other data. They represent "the worst category we have ever reviewed" in consumer goods. Getting a GM vehicle consents to the company collecting your "genetic, physiological, behavioral, and biological characteristics"—and selling it.
It gets worse. Nissan says they can collect information about your "sexual activity" and "intelligence" (which they apparently infer from your personal data) and can share that information with "marketing and promotional partners" or for their own "direct marketing purposes." What on earth kind of campaign are you planning, Nissan? On second thought, don't answer that. Just please cut it out. Especially after your data breach earlier this year, it's only fair your super-sensitive data privileges are canceled.
And yet security is weak to non-existent. It's a black hole of grab-and-sell, with no serious consideration (or even awareness) of the technical consequences or risks at hand.
We're worried that it puts your personal information or even control of your car up for grabs for criminals. Since car companies are already lagging behind on data protection, it could be just a matter of time until snoopers, stalkers, and thieves don't even need high tech hacking skills but just a few bucks to buy a hacking kit off the deep web (like they already can for all kinds of malicious software) to get access. We shudder to think of the scams that a criminal could cook up with that much information in their arsenal.