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PX Eliezer
Morrow Project fan
Premium
join:2013-03-10
Outland
kudos:5
Reviews:
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1 recommendation

EZ Pass privacy issues

We [expect] EZ Pass to be pinged at toll booths or on toll roads in general, that's the purpose....

But to find that it's being pinged on regular city streets is a step beyond.

E-ZPasses Get Read All Over New York (Not Just At Toll Booths)

....The man, who goes by the Internet handle “Puking Monkey,” did an analysis of the many ways his car could be tracked and stumbled upon something rather interesting: his E-ZPass, which he obtained for the purpose of paying tolls, was being used to track his car in unexpected places, far away from any toll booths.

Puking Monkey is an electronics tinkerer, so he hacked his RFID-enabled E-ZPass to set off a light and a “moo cow” every time it was being read. Then he drove around New York. His tag got milked multiple times on the short drive from Times Square to Madison Square Garden in mid-town Manhattan….

»www.forbes.com/sites/kashmirhill···-booths/

And yes, this is not surprising or new, but the fellow has documented this in a new way.


DownTheShore
Honoring The Captain
Premium
join:2003-12-02
Beautiful NJ
kudos:13
Reviews:
·Verizon Online DSL

Interesting read.

Though for folks worried:

“The tag ID is scrambled to make it anonymous. The scrambled ID is held in dynamic memory for several minutes to compare with other sightings from other readers strategically placed for the purpose of measuring travel times which are then averaged to develop an understanding of traffic conditions,” says TransCore spokesperson Barbara Catlin by email. “Travel times are used to estimate average speeds for general traveler information and performance metrics. Tag sightings (reads) age off the system after several minutes or after they are paired and are not stored because they are of no value. Hence the system cannot identify the tag user and does not keep any record of the tag sightings.”

In other words, reading of the E-ZPasses won’t be very useful for uniquely tracking you or your speed, but it’s a reminder once again that if you accept some kind of tracking device, it may be used in ways you wouldn’t expect.


--
Patriotism is not waving a flag, it is living the ideals

I want to retire to the Isle of Sodor and ride the trains.

Life is just better when Jeter is in the lineup.


PX Eliezer
Morrow Project fan
Premium
join:2013-03-10
Outland
kudos:5

Right, but a different gov't agency could expand this usage, or even private parties could do it.

All part of the slippery slope, in this case financed by the public for our own "convenience"....


TheMG
Premium
join:2007-09-04
Canada
kudos:3
Reviews:
·NorthWest Tel
reply to PX Eliezer

They don't need the EZ-pass to track vehicles if they really want.

Cameras and computers are good enough these days they can simply track license plates with strategically placed cameras along roadways, and computers do the OCR (optical character recognition) to decode the license plates without human intervention.

In fact, many countries are already doing this, even the US. Some police vehicles are equipped with such a camera system that reads all license plates that the police vehicle drives by.



bhan261

join:2001-02-12
New York, NY

And London uses cameras to read license plates and then send bills to cars in the "congestion zone" that don't have the proper permit.


PX Eliezer
Morrow Project fan
Premium
join:2013-03-10
Outland
kudos:5

So much is done with license plates these days----

Yet they can be swapped out with a screwdriver!

Very few people would notice if someone had swapped out their plates.



deke40
Premium
join:2003-01-23
Texas
reply to PX Eliezer

Seeing I have Onstar(not active on my part) in my car I guess I'm not going to worry
about my EZ Tag.



FFH
Premium
join:2002-03-03
Tavistock NJ
kudos:5
reply to PX Eliezer

When not going to actually use the tag at a toll booth, you can put it in the RFID blocking bag they give you. Then no one reads it.