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Police State tyranny

Kill Switch

Former Vice President Joe Biden signed the infrastructure bill into law. Buried in that law is a provision that requires all new cars, trucks, and SUVs to have a “kill switch” installed by 2026. The system must connect to the vehicle’s operational controls, so as to disable the vehicle either before driving or during, when impairment is detected.

Marketed to Congress as a benign tool to help prevent drunk driving, this measure is disturbingly short on details. The switch will passively monitor the performance of a driver of a motor vehicle to accurately identify whether that driver may be impaired. The term “impaired driving” isn’t defined by the legislation, so it would be open to interpretation by regulators such as the Department of Transportation and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

The worst part of the legislation is the open nature of the system which will feature at least one backdoor for third-party access to the system’s data at any time.

Who has access to the data collected by the kill switch system? Will the police be given access to the data without a warrant? What about insurance companies, will they be granted access to the data in order to better understand what kind of driver is being insured, or worse, will they know with what frequency your driving habits “change” which could then be interpreted as impairment?

What if a driver is not drunk, but sleepy, and the car forces itself to the side of the road before the driver can find a safe place to pull over and rest? Considering that there are no realistic mechanisms to immediately challenge or stop the car from being disabled, drivers will be forced into dangerous situations without their consent or control. Imagine your car stopping in the middle of a bad neighborhood.

This law is a disaster in the making. They just can’t resist bossing people around. Tyrants, the whole lot of them.

9 replies on “Kill Switch”

Hacking and spoofing of embedded systems is going to become a highly valuable skill. Already is, really, but it will be much more useful as the future deals us intolerable dog shit like this technology.

Then again, I own a few vehicles, the oldest of which is approaching 35 years old, and has none of this intrusive fuckery to worry about. Yeah, they’ll probably try to outlaw vehicles that can’t conform to the requried “standard”. My money says they’ll get .50 cal facials before that happens. Everyone’s nuts are in a bench vise now, and someone’s gonna get pissed enough to finally stop the arrogant prick who keeps turning the crank down. Find me Mr. T, an oxy acetylene rig, and some 1/2″ pig iron plate. Gonna need to do some home brew armor protection pretty soon it looks like. I’m no colonel, but I love it when a plan comes together.

I’ll leave it to the hackers to find a way to bypass this crap or hide it’s ability to work as intended…root/jailbreak that bitch

Wait until they make it impossible to insure a car without this tech. Or they milage out cars like they do in Japan. Be very very easy to know if your car is up to date by just looking at it.

I’ve been thinking this for a long time. The Japanese thing. I’ve owned and driven daily older vehicles all my life (generally in the 10 to 20 years old range). And I saw the writing on the wall with all the cash for clunkers BS. They want to get rid of the old cars and force people into new ones. Voluntarily at first, mandated as needed. Eventually they’ll get there and those of us who swear we’ll just continue fixing up our old ones forever are going be in for a rude awakening. Although with everything else, I’m sure the kinetic action will start over something else first.

They don’t even have to make maintaining older vehicles illegal -just financially unviable. When parts aren’t available – who can afford to make their own, as a practical matter?
Vanishingly few – and even at that, requiring ‘certified’/‘official’ parts kill that option as well. It’s well past time to Just Say NO.

You are missing the biggest point. If 3rd parties have backdoor access to the “kill switch”, when will 3rd parties be able to activate it, “for your protection”, after seeing your “impairment”. After all, if it can override the vehicle’s controls, being able to shutdown the vehicle on command is the next step.

Also, what about using to the “kill switch” to prevent you from driving into a specified location. Cross the “boundary line”, and your vehicle stops. This is a totalitarian despot’s dream.

Lastly, the way this drunk driver’s “impairment” kill switch is being presented sounds very much like the camel’s nose in the tent, and follows the implementation path of a number of “voluntary” items, “for our safety”, that then became mandatory.

And suppose the third party is a carjacker? Being able to disable your shiny car makes it that much easier to catch you and make you hand over the key before re-enabling the car.
Hm. Will politicians’ cars somehow be exempt, or will hackers have a field day inconveniencing the powerful?

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