Insurance Industry tracking your driving through phone apps

Trice

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Apr 1, 2010
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Here is the original NYT story. She's a great reporter. She is the one who broke the big story months ago of GM selling driver data to Lexis-Nexis.

But while I agree this is a shtty practice, can't people customize their app permissions to prevent this from happening? For example, I use GasBuddy, but I can set the permissions not to use my location or activity (like driving) unless it asks me to. Wouldn't that prevent the transmission of this kind of data?
 

FerShizzle

person/genius
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Meh.

Google/Apple are tracking my every move anyway I might as well get a discount on my car insurance for something that's happening anyway...
i for one welcome my AI overlords.

i really want cars equipped with cameras that can report reckless driving to the DMV and local police. if driving was less anonymous, maybe people wouldn't drive around like ********.
 

CascadeClone

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Oct 24, 2009
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Wait until they use the same technology to control your life (because it's coming)
It only takes a small minority of people committed to making you do the "right thing" because that's the right thing to do.

What's really frightening, is these people exist on both sides of the political spectrum, they just have highly divergent opinions on what is the "right thing".

"Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive."
 

KnappShack

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May 26, 2008
20,670
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Parts Unknown
It only takes a small minority of people committed to making you do the "right thing" because that's the right thing to do.

What's really frightening, is these people exist on both sides of the political spectrum, they just have highly divergent opinions on what is the "right thing".

"Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive."

Something something Ted Kaczynski something something....
 
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HFCS

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Aug 13, 2010
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I might be fine if they could track my actual car. Every insurer I’ve had who checks odometer finds a way of somehow putting me in a bracket one higher than my actual unless I update them and correct them constantly.

I live in a huge city with a ton of accidents but I almost never drive there. My actual driving miles are in the middle of nowhere on weekends and vacations. I’d welcome true stats vs the total bull**** stats they charge me for.
 

Jer

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Feb 28, 2006
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It's often said that if something is free then you are the product. But you are often the product even if you are paying for something.
Yeah, it's been the case for quite a while now that you are the product regardless of your purchasing or subscriptions.

Easiest example for people to understand: Just because you subscribe to Netflix doesn't mean they aren't capturing all your viewing habits to continue to keep you hooked.

You can subscribe to get your fancy blue dot/checkmark but the same amount of data about you is harvested and sold/resold/resold/resold/etc as the person not paying. PornHub knows what you do on Facebook. Facebook knows what articles or forums you follow for their algorithms. TikTok is completely algorithm based. Reddit forced out 3rd party apps so they can track everything about you in their self-controlled app - how long you view one image or post over another, which you speed past, etc.

Google, Meta, X, data brokers, etc - you would be absolutely shocked about how much data they have on you and how they know everything you do on sites completely unrelated to them. The data gathering has become so sophisticated (I know because I deal with it for my company's IT audits) that literally everything you do online is available to pretty much anybody.

Research pixel tracking, ip address based tracking, beacons, fingerprinting, JS scripts, device profiling, etc. These all allow cross site and in some cases even cross device tracking, data harvesting, etc. They can even track to the millisecond how much time you spend on each post, picture, etc to build a profile of what catches your eye.
 

CapnCy

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Jul 6, 2010
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Meh.

Google/Apple are tracking my every move anyway I might as well get a discount on my car insurance for something that's happening anyway...

Anytime i travel i'm always reminded at how all this is interconnected on the phone. Ads popping up on certain aps, suggestions in searches, etc.
 
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spk123

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If I'm an actuary I'm assuming everyone is a bad driver and charging that rate and then using this to find the even worse drivers and charging them an even higher rate.
That would actually be a pretty quick way to drive away all of your "good" risks to lower-priced competitors and ensure that your book of business is made up solely of "bad" drivers and setting up a vicious cycle of adverse selection.
 
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BWRhasnoAC

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Here is the original NYT story. She's a great reporter. She is the one who broke the big story months ago of GM selling driver data to Lexis-Nexis.

But while I agree this is a shtty practice, can't people customize their app permissions to prevent this from happening? For example, I use GasBuddy, but I can set the permissions not to use my location or activity (like driving) unless it asks me to. Wouldn't that prevent the transmission of this kind of data?
In theory but that's giving these conglomerates the benefit of the doubt they wouldn't just take it anyways. There's plenty of cases where they have been found to do just that.
 

Jer

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It's hilarious that anyone thinks they still have any semblance of privacy.
While I know that anybody can buy anything and everything about me, I take solace in the fact that there are 8 billion other people on the earth and most are probably more interesting to dig into than me:). So while the data is available and can/will be used in countless automated ways, no "human" is digging through my stuff.
 
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CycloneErik

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Jan 31, 2008
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rememberingdoria.wordpress.com
And, as they state in the video, if drivers around you slam on brakes so you have to react also, you get "points" toward your insurance driving record, even if no incident occurs. Merely the fact that you had to slam the brakes. I wonder how many points you get for doing donuts in the parking lot?

Just mark the thing that says you weren't the driver. It's not real complicated.
 

CycloneErik

Well-Known Member
Jan 31, 2008
106,165
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rememberingdoria.wordpress.com
Yeah, it's been the case for quite a while now that you are the product regardless of your purchasing or subscriptions.

Easiest example for people to understand: Just because you subscribe to Netflix doesn't mean they aren't capturing all your viewing habits to continue to keep you hooked.

You can subscribe to get your fancy blue dot/checkmark but the same amount of data about you is harvested and sold/resold/resold/resold/etc as the person not paying. PornHub knows what you do on Facebook. Facebook knows what articles or forums you follow for their algorithms. TikTok is completely algorithm based. Reddit forced out 3rd party apps so they can track everything about you in their self-controlled app - how long you view one image or post over another, which you speed past, etc.

Google, Meta, X, data brokers, etc - you would be absolutely shocked about how much data they have on you and how they know everything you do on sites completely unrelated to them. The data gathering has become so sophisticated (I know because I deal with it for my company's IT audits) that literally everything you do online is available to pretty much anybody.

Research pixel tracking, ip address based tracking, beacons, fingerprinting, JS scripts, device profiling, etc. These all allow cross site and in some cases even cross device tracking, data harvesting, etc. They can even track to the millisecond how much time you spend on each post, picture, etc to build a profile of what catches your eye.

Yup. I did a search for dance shoes for kiddo today. Strangely enough, I have ads for dance shoes all across everything.
 
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Jer

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Oh, my search history is a disaster. I look for images for slides to teach history. I have a lot of red flags out there.
But I'll avoid that one!
My wife is an author as a hobby and publishes maybe 8 books a year. Her niche is young adult romance and often times writes books about murder, spy stuff, etc. That makes for some ****** up ads in our household.

I run a Firewalla Gold Plus and can see all the activity on our network. The first time I got an alert about her searching and reading about "how to kill your husband" and "countries without extradition", I learned to stop the alerts.
 

spk123

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Apr 14, 2006
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Putting aside the (completely valid) privacy concerns surrounding whether consumers truly know what data are being collected about them, it's important to recognize that usage-based insurance and telematics are not only about identifying and charging higher rates to bad drivers (or drivers, regardless of "ability," who do more of their driving in riskier situations, like the rush hour example), but also identifying and attracting less risky drivers via lower rates. The ability to accurately discriminate (I use that term in a value-neutral sense) between good and bad drivers is kind of the "secret sauce" as to what makes personal auto insurers profitable (or lately, less unprofitable) than their rivals. Without this ability, rates are more "unfair" - that is, less risky drivers are being charged too much and more risky drivers are being charged too little. One could even argue that telematics is a more "fair" (i.e. actually based on driving behavior) way to charge for auto insurance than some traditional proxy variables like age, gender, credit score, etc.

All that said, I'm a hypocrite because even though I know that while UBI via telematics would likely benefit me personally (I work from home, don't drive a ton of miles, generally follow speed limits, etc.), I don't use it because I do get a bit queasy about the privacy issues.
 

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