FCC proposes measures to combat abuse through connected cars

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The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is set to tackle a pressing issue: the misuse of connected car technology by abusers to harass and intimidate their partners.

In a bid to curb this alarming trend, the FCC has announced the launch of a formal proceeding aimed at exploring ways to assist survivors of domestic violence.

The initiative will delve into how the FCC can leverage existing legislation to ensure car manufacturers and wireless carriers are taking proactive steps to aid abuse survivors. This move comes in response to mounting concerns over reports of smart car services being exploited to perpetrate stalking and harm against victims of abuse.

“No survivor of domestic violence and abuse should have to choose between giving up their car and allowing themselves to be stalked and harmed by those who can access its connectivity and data,” said FCC Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel.

“We can—and should—do more to make sure these new forms of communications help keep survivors safe.”

The FCC’s efforts build upon previous outreach initiatives, including Chairwoman Rosenworcel’s correspondence with auto manufacturers and wireless service providers earlier this year. The Commission aims to gather insights on the prevalence and nature of connected car services in the market, soliciting feedback on potential regulatory adjustments to address their impact on domestic violence survivors.

Moreover, the proceeding seeks input on proactive measures that connected car service providers can implement to shield survivors from the misuse of their services. This comprehensive approach underscores the FCC’s commitment to implementing the Safe Connections Act, bipartisan legislation empowering the FCC to assist survivors of domestic violence by ensuring secure access to communications.

One notable aspect of the Act is the requirement for covered providers to offer separate phone lines for family plans where the abuser is listed, enabling survivors to maintain their connectivity while safely disentangling from shared plans. This provision offers a lifeline to survivors, enabling them to stay connected with their support networks without fear of retribution.

As the proceedings unfold, stakeholders and advocates anticipate a robust dialogue aimed at crafting effective safeguards against the misuse of connected car technology.

(Photo by Jonas Leupe)

See also: Telit Cinterion launches GNSS module with centimetre accuracy

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