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Black box for your car?

Joshua Klein

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The National Transportation Safety Board recommended yesterday that all US cars be required to have black boxes like those used in airplanes. Privacy advocates are freaking out because it's not clear who would own the resulting data, but you don't need to be John Gilmore to realize that these things will make it a little harder to argue your way out of a speeding ticket. In any case it's sort of a moot point; the NTSB recommendation came two months after the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (which has the actual authority here) said it didn't see a need to require them because automakers were adding them to more models on their own. It looks like black boxes are already coming, required or not, and somebody out there is going to make a mint doing after-market "de-installations" of these things.

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