Black boxes in automobiles

There was a piece on the evening news yesterday about black boxes in automobiles which record everything you do with the car and everything the car does by itself. They have been used to convict people following
accidents. But when one family wanted the data as evidence to sue the car maker, the company refused to give out the information. A court ruled that the black box and the data it contained belonged to the car owner and not the car maker and ordered it turned over to the owner. At issue in this case was a possibly defective airbag that caused great injury to a passenger in the car.
My old car does not have a black box. If I buy a new car I don't want it to have a black box. I don't want my car telling tales on me. Can you disable or remove these things?
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Gogarty wrote:

There are possibly two "black boxes" in your new car.
The "black box #1" is the computer that runs the engine. They just added some memory circuits so it could remember the data it was already collecting.
Black box #2 is called Onstar and tracks your car's location with GPS and is capable of reporting that information via cell phone technology. The Onstar folks can even send a command to unlock your doors if you lock your keys in the car.
Funny thing about black boxes is that they could convict you if you did something wrong but they could also save you if someone else did something wrong and lied and blamed you. With the black boxes it wouldn't be just your word against his.
The case I read in the news was a about a truck driver who backed into a car and then lied and tried to claim that car rear ended him. The black box proved that the truck driver was indeed in reverse gear at the time of the accident and was not rear ended by the car as he claimed.
In America's current shabby liberal justice system I'm sure that the truck driver was punished for backing into the car but received absolutely no additional punishment for lying about it later.
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This unit collects all sorts of information about the car. It's what turns on your "check engine" light when something is wrong, and what the local DMV probably scans for your emmisions test. Remove it and your car becomes a lump of scrap metal and plastic.

Not really a black box, more like a cell phone + GPS. Not real familiar with this, but I doubt it actually records info. It functions more like an aircraft ELT sending out a signal when there is trouble.

Quite true. This court ruling sounds wise: the data in the box belongs to the vehicle owner, and any one else who wants it (cops, lawsuit) needs a subpoena to get it.
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Why don't you take your political hyperbol where others appreciate it. This is an MB newsgroup dedicated to serious questions and answers regarding same. We're really not interested in your political views.
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This is a Type III anonymous message, sent to you by the Mixminion server at straylight.snikt.net. If you do not want to receive anonymous messages, please contact ADMIN. For more information about anonymity, see URL.
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What I would like to have is a means of
a: disabling Onstar completely and permanently.
b: permanently disabling all "Event Data Recorder" devices and functions without making the car un-driveable.
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The only "Event Data Recorder" device that I know of is the SRS crash sensor. It records what was happening at the time of a crash and you have air bag deployment. Other than that, nothing gets recorded.
Can't tell you if LoJack does any recording.
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says...

Exactly. Now, can someone tell us how to do that?
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In the back of your owners manual there is info on how to order a service manual. The info you seek would be there for you to figure out whether you can, or not. I would think that they would make it integral to thew autos functioning, but it is pure speculation on my part.
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Visit http://www.harristechnical.com/ for uses of data recorders. Not so good IMHO.
Visit http://www.harristechnical.com/downloads/cdrlist.pdf
That lists all vehicles with data recorders built in. I purchased my last new car because it didn't have a "black box". Unfortunately, I have never heard of a way to disable them.
Regards all, TwistyCreek Admin
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On Mon, 23 Jan 2006 14:21:03 -0700 (MST), Borked Pseudo Mailed

No problems. I hate the damn things.
Regards All TwistyCreek Admin
BTW, privacy is why I run this re-mailer.
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