Cars have been getting smarter, just like mobile phones and household gadgets. From playing music to operating your smartphone apps to remembering directions and frequently visited places, vehicles are capable of a wide range of functions. Similar to other advanced devices, you don’t want to take your car’s cybersecurity for granted.
Of course, these features have made life and travel easier for people. Even when you travel long distances, you can stay connected, entertained, and informed about what’s happening back home. And you don’t even have to get expensive cars to be able to get these features.
Even budget vehicles come with smart features these days. So much so that you can unlock your car from your smartphone and make it remember people who can access the vehicle, besides you.
But like every technology, such features also come with their own downsides. When these smart features are used, they require your personal information.
From your name, vehicle number, address, phone numbers and email addresses, to frequently visited places, and names of people who have access to your vehicle, a number of personal identifying information are exposed for using these features. The information remains stored in the database of the vehicle and can be accessed by the manufacturer. And even emailed across unprotected channels like Hillary liked to do when she was Sec. of State but let’s get back on track.
Same Car, Different Owner
In fact, if your vehicle is stolen by a technologically smart thief, all your saved information can be accessed by him. Moreover, when cars change owners, the information in the vehicle remains. This puts your data at risk.
Privacy threats are common in computers and mobile devices because they extensively use personal information. But not many realize that vehicles these days also have access to plenty of identifying information.
Cybercriminals can easily hack into a vehicle’s system and not only steal the car but also the information stored. Vehicle owners have been waking up to this reality, and have been in search of ways to remove the information from vehicles.
It has been found that removing such identifying information from vehicles is difficult and complicated. That is why there is an app that exists to make the task easier. Called Privacy4Cars, the application makes deleting car data easier.
What is Privacy4Cars?
Much like the data you upload to your computer or on the cloud or transmit over a wireless network, the data on your vehicle is also at risk. With every vehicle getting smart these days, a ton of information is stored on them, from phone logs, navigation history, to address books and garage codes. When you sell your car, the data remains in the vehicle.
This had led to growing concerns among the media, privacy regulators and advocacy groups, as well as industry experts. The increasing amount of Personally Identifiable Information (PII) stored in vehicles has the potential of being exposed to third parties and being exploited by criminals.
Many solutions have bee tried before, including resetting the vehicle’s systems to factory settings to try and wipe the personal data from the vehicle. But that is a time consuming, not to mention, manual process. Each vehicle has a different resetting process, depending upon the model, year, and trim.
The information found in the owner’s manual is lengthy and often hard to understand. There is no such application or device that can be used to reset the vehicle and erase the data. These complications surrounding the removal of electronic data from vehicles prevent owners from doing anything about it.
Privacy4Cars is a mobile profess with the fastest growing database of step-by-step visual instructions to streamline and delete Personally Identifiable Information from vehicles. The technology is so simple that even unskilled operators to easily and quickly erase all electronic personal information on vehicles.
What Does the App Do?
Privacy4Cars has a patent-pending process providing customized, visual step-by-step tutorials users that help in the quick deletion of personal information from vehicles such as phone numbers, call logs, and location history. The app allows users to choose from hundreds of vehicle makes, models and years, and new vehicle makes and models are added weekly.
Privacy4Cars can be used by individual consumers as well as businesses like small fleets. The app can either be used on its own on iOS and Android, while manufacturers and business owners can embed it into their existing apps. During the launch period, the app will remain free to download and use, and will later charge $1.99 monthly.
This is the first ever app designed for vehicle cybersecurity, developed by Andrea Amico, a vehicle privacy, and cybersecurity expert. Privacy4Cars aims to offer a simple vehicle security and privacy compliance solution to vehicle owners, dealers, and fleets.
Vehicles Can Be a Target Now
With the app, Amico also aims to educate vehicle owners about the dangers of storing information in the car’s system. Amico says that no one would think of handing their phone to someone else without erasing our securing their data, so why is the same not done with vehicles. Privacy4Cars hopes to tighten vehicle cybersecurity.