Big Brother

Rental Car ?Big Brother? is Watching You Down Under


Renting a car on vacation is awesome. You get to drive it like an idiot, accelerate over speed bumps, and constantly remind yourself that ?it?s just a rental? as pieces fly off as you make your way down the highway. Not?these are all examples of how NOT to treat your rental, of course.

The fun might be coming to an end?well at least in Australia?as a new type of in-car GPS does a little bit more than help you locate the nearest Starbucks or McDonald?s. This rental car GPS keeps an eye out on your driving habits as well as your location. That means the rental car company knows when you take its car somewhere it?s not supposed to be, or that the flat tire you claim happened overnight was actually caused by taking the Toyota Camry on an unpaved road.

DriveMyCar Rentals is installing the new tracking devices in about 30 percent of their vehicles, as they just want to keep their cars safe and sound. If you?re caught taking your car off the beaten bath you?ll receive a text message to remind you that you?re in violation of your rental agreement?what a downer. The rental car company is more like a peer-to-peer option, so it?s kind of to protect owners? cars who are loaning them out to other drivers. We guess we?d want to know where our car was as well if we were to sign up for something like this.

Understandably an Australian civil liberties group isn?t too thrilled about the Big Brother tracking device, especially since they?re concerned about the company storing your travel habits. DriveMyCar Rentals insists that everything is real time, so they don?t keep a running tally or record of where you?ve been. Still, no matter the type of company or the level of safety, we?re not totally cool with anyone following us around during our vacation.

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