NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — When EZ Move was first launched, many individuals feared it might be used as a monitoring gadget.
Now, which will very nicely be the case.
CBS2’s Alex Denis observed one thing new whereas driving via Manhattan; unmarked bins affixed to dozens of visitors lights.
Specialists stated the packing containers have been quietly put in at busy intersections to gather knowledge on automobiles and probably their drivers.
A hacker who requested to stay nameless single-handedly uncovered what the packing containers have been getting used for when he rigged his EZ Cross tag to make a noise each time it was scanned.
Whereas he anticipated the system to go off when driving by way of tolls, he was shocked to seek out the EZ cross regularly made noise when he was randomly driving across the metropolis.
“I assumed that was type of odd, as a result of why?” he stated.
“Based mostly on a Freedom of Info Regulation request that the New York Civil Liberties Union made, they put collectively a map of the place the readers are situated,” AAA’s Robert Sinclair defined.
The map exhibits properly over 100 intersections, the place automobiles are being scanned for quite a lot of particulars, Sinclair stated.
“Details about the car, the time, velocity, location, that kind of factor,” he defined.
Sinclair stated there are totally different functions, however primarily the tags are scanned to assist monitor visitors in actual time.
“If anybody has pushed on the highways and seen the indicators that point out how lengthy it’d take to get to a specific vacation spot, that’s EZ Cross info that’s being displayed,” he stated.
The hacker wonders what else the seemingly private info will probably be used for.
“It will possibly know the place you park, for a way lengthy,” he stated, “Your each day habits which might be being tracked.”
New York Metropolis Council Member Costa Constantinides stated it’s necessary to maintain visitors shifting, however not on the expense of privateness.
“I’m positive there’s a shared aim of defending civil liberties that we’ll definitely look into,” he stated.
Within the meantime, there’s a strategy to shield your self.
“Simply put it within the bag. It won’t be learn if it’s inside this bag,” Sinclair stated.
After reaching out to a number of businesses for extra clarification on how the knowledge is getting used, the New York Metropolis Division of Transportation confirmed EZ Move readers on the road gather randomized knowledge to assist the company monitor visitors speeds alongside key arteries, however wouldn’t elaborate.