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Traffic lights are following drivers

April 20, 2024

How didn't I see this coming? It appears that traffic lights in the Netherlands are now contacting apps on the phones of anyone waiting for a green light. By combining the data of different crossings, traffic engineers can measure how well traffic is flowing through cities. This is in fact very private data, because as soon as you know where each phone is going every day, you know where they live, where they work, where they shop, where there children go to school or daycare and where their friends live.

According to the article, the Dutch privacy watchdog has asked the responsible minister to look into this. I'm still worried.

I suppose this looks like an extra reason to use bicycles instead of cars for in-city distances, but nothing will prevent these traffic engineers to expand their project to include cyclists, if it doesn't already. So, now everybody leaves their phone at home when outside?

What a world that would be.

Categories: privacy

Tags: traffic-lights, avg, gdpr

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