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Old 20th August 2019, 11:54   #1
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Default Big brother Mercedes knows where you are (location tracking)!

Dont know if this applies to cars sold in India

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The spy in EVERY Mercedes:
  • Firm admits all the cars it sells are fitted with secret sensor which can pinpoint their exact location at flip of a switch
  • All new and used cars sold by Mercedes dealers are fitted with tracking devices
  • The German company sold more than 170,000 new cars in Britain alone last year
  • Mercedes insisted sensors are only ever activated in ‘extreme circumstances’

More here

Last edited by Vid6639 : 20th August 2019 at 13:21.
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Old 20th August 2019, 12:45   #2
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Default re: Big brother Mercedes knows where you are (location tracking)!

Isn't this only applicable to cars sold under finance options? Anyhow, tracking a car's location needs a data connection from the car to transmit its co-ordinates and that would need a tie-up with one of the mobile service providers isn't it?
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Old 20th August 2019, 12:54   #3
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Default re: Big brother Mercedes knows where you are (location tracking)!

They mention it needs to be activated. If done remotely, there needs to be some 2 way data connection with the car which is also needed to send back the location. Maybe these cars have data connection for other advanced features already and is being used for this.

I hope customers had not signed this unknowingly.
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Old 20th August 2019, 13:28   #4
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Default re: Big brother Mercedes knows where you are (location tracking)!

Quote:
Originally Posted by srishiva View Post
T.... If done remotely, there needs to be some 2 way data connection with the car which is also needed to send back the location. Maybe these cars have data connection for other advanced features already and is being used for this.

....
EU cars and even motorcycles comes with SOS feature, this feature needs location and data plan, you can have this enabled and pay subscription fee, the infrastructure exits in most of the model which can be enabled/disabled as you subscribe. As mentioned in extreme cases they would enable it without owner subscription may be for government/law enforcement requirement or even for their own data collection.


-Pramod
PS: found this for Mercedes https://www.mbusa.com/vcm/MB/Digital...ll_9-24-12.pdf & for other cars here https://www.alphr.com/cars/1007648/w...-actually-does in both cases you can see the voice and data activated with location, there is also a 2 way communication channel.

These feature downside as mentioned in the article "The downside of the eCall system is its reliance on GPS global positioning technology. There are perceived privacy concerns with this, as there is no reassurance that the technology can't be "reverse engineered" to track a vehicle if there hasn't been an accident. Also, there's a built-in microphone system as part of the system’s electronics, and there are concerns this can be used to eavesdrop on the car at any time"

Last edited by pramods : 20th August 2019 at 13:33. Reason: added few urls for further read
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Old 22nd August 2019, 09:54   #5
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Default Re: Big brother Mercedes knows where you are (location tracking)!

The MB arrangement is very similar to Kindle 3G which allows user to access, purchase and download books in every network across the globe where a phone company is offering service.

There is no difference in the hardware when you do not want this service, just that if you opt for it and pay-up, the device comes pre-activated and you do not need a wi-fi to connect to Amazon from Kindle anywhere in the world.

It is highly likely that the sensor is present in all new offerings from MB (obviously hibernated) and can be activated at any time.

Last edited by i74js : 22nd August 2019 at 09:57.
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Old 22nd August 2019, 12:53   #6
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Default Re: Big brother Mercedes knows where you are (location tracking)!

From various UK news sites:

Quote:
But Mercedes customers who buy cars through the official financial arm give their permission when signing lengthy terms and conditions — which often go unread. Mercedes says a clause about “location sensors” is in bold print just above a customer’s signature on finance contracts.
The vast majority of Mercedes sold in the UK are leased/financed. So the driver typically does not own the car as such. If you default on the payment, Mercedes and or the finance/lease company want to make sure they can recover their car from you.

Jeroen
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Old 23rd August 2019, 09:36   #7
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Default Re: Big brother Mercedes knows where you are (location tracking)!

Isn't this already applicable to all "connected" cars? Here in the USA, I've seen my friend's 2018 3 series has the feature to see the location of the car in the BMW phone app. Every time the car is locked, the exact GPS co-ordinates are sent to BMW servers and is displayed in the app. This feature, like mentioned before, is also useful for emergency services and the SOS feature built into the car.
To add to this, BMW can even unlock the car for you over-the-air if you call them, in the case you lock the keys inside by accident.
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Old 23rd August 2019, 10:56   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sid394 View Post
Isn't this already applicable to all "connected" cars?.

Yes, Mercedes has this connected car too. However, from what I understand, this is a complete separate stand alone unit fitted on top/next to whatever connectivity feature the car might have already.

I guess it is to ensure the driver or anybody else, can not tamper with it.
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Old 27th August 2019, 11:37   #9
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Default Re: Big brother Mercedes knows where you are (location tracking)!

I have been seeing this sticker on new MBs in Germany lately. Not observed on other cars.
All MB rental cars have them. Private cars some of them have it while others might have removed the sticker or may be the tracking device is not fitted.

Big brother Mercedes knows where you are (location tracking)!-mb_tracking.jpg
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Old 27th August 2019, 13:02   #10
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Default Re: Big brother Mercedes knows where you are (location tracking)!

I guess the tracking itself is not the big deal. All connected cars-And I assume pretty much all the high end cars are connected now, will have a tracking functionality.

If they are tracking/have the ability to track without explicitly informing the customer and taking consent, then it definitely is a big deal. With the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) Regulations enforced, accessing sensitive personal data (which includes Geo-Location) without explicit consent would be a huge issue as the excerpts below show.

Quote:
Penalties
Organizations in breach of GDPR can be fined up to 4% of annual global turnover or €20 Million (whichever is greater). This is the maximum fine that can be imposed for the most serious infringements e.g.not having sufficient customer consent to process data or violating the core of Privacy by Design concepts. There is a tiered approach to fines e.g. a company can be fined 2% for not having their records in order (article 28), not notifying the supervising authority and data subject about a breach or not conducting impact assessment. It is important to note that these rules apply to both controllers and processors – meaning ‘clouds’ are not exempt from GDPR enforcement.

Consent
The conditions for consent have been strengthened, and companies are no longer able to use long illegible terms and conditions full of legalese. The request for consent must be given in an intelligible and easily accessible form, with the purpose for data processing attached to that consent. Consent must be clear and distinguishable from other matters and provided in an intelligible and easily accessible form, using clear and plain language. It must be as easy to withdraw consent as it is to give it.
Source- Euro GDPR
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Old 11th September 2019, 23:02   #11
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Default Re: Big brother Mercedes knows where you are (location tracking)!

This really shouldn't come as a surprise anymore. With Google tracking every imaginable aspect about your life. I'd say just accept the fact that privacy is just a notion in today's world and act accordingly.
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