: Beware of your OnStar system



rickko
11-20-03, 10:14 PM
Watch out OnStar subscribers!

It was reported tonight in a news story that the FBI used the OnStar system to monitor a potential criminal's conversation as he drove his car around while they were survailling him.

A judge authorized them to use the system for the purpose of eaves dropping.

That seems to tell me that its possible for those OnStar operators to monitor
conversations in your car.

I predict this isn't going to pretty for OnStar in the near future.

I don't have OnStar but am curious, can it be totally disabled by the driver, or is it active all the time?

Not that I'm guilty of anything but I'd figure out a way find and totally disable the built in microphone until I wanted to use it if I had it in any of my vehicles.

..rickko..
PS. The guy pleaded guilty to the charges that were being brought against him, that being conspiring to collude with various San Diego city council members to insure him special privileges related to operating topless places in the city.

elwesso
11-20-03, 11:24 PM
Thats disturbing.... I dont know if there is a way to disable onstar...... You could always cut the cord to the antenna....... However, taking off the antenna might be enough....

We have onstar in our GTP...... Thankfully I dont drive it so people dont hear my conversations!!!!

Ralph
11-20-03, 11:51 PM
I don't always raise my antenna on my cell phone and it works, supposedly with more radiation microwaves shooting through my pea brain. So I wonder about unscrewing the antenna. What about the aluminium foil trick, but that would look ridiculous! Not to mention the black boxes in ALL GM cars now.

BUILDINGCTSAMG
11-21-03, 12:34 AM
Interesting

maydog
11-21-03, 01:18 AM
Fuse?

Ralph
11-21-03, 01:22 AM
Fuse?


Is it that easy? Then the thieves would be able to take cars more efficiently if they knew. :shhh:

Slick Black Cadillac
11-21-03, 01:29 AM
We had a company vehicle with Onstar on it; corporate used the system to track the vehicles location and routes to be shure it wasn't being used for unnessary personal use and that all sceduled stops were being made.

I also read in Popular Mechanics that the system can be used after an accident to dertimine vehicle speed, radio volume, seatbelt useage, blinker position, and ammout of braking force applied. Also if the vehicle is in a high speed pursuit, with a court order Onstar can kill the engine and lock the suspect the the car.

Where does the privacy invasion stop? Ever see the movie Demolition Man or Enemy of the State? How long will it be untill we prove George Orwell right?

Ralph
11-21-03, 01:49 AM
We had a company vehicle with Onstar on it; corporate used the system to track the vehicles location and routes to be shure it wasn't being used for unnessary personal use and that all sceduled stops were being made.

I also read in Popular Mechanics that the system can be used after an accident to dertimine vehicle speed, radio volume, seatbelt useage, blinker position, and ammout of braking force applied. Also if the vehicle is in a high speed pursuit, with a court order Onstar can kill the engine and lock the suspect the the car.

Where does the privacy invasion stop? Ever see the movie Demolition Man or Enemy of the State? How long will it be untill we prove George Orwell right?

As far as I heard, it's the black recorder box that stores the info of driving styles, highest speed, etc. Have you heard about Wallmart announcing placing chips in all products so they can trace your location in store, and who knows where else? On the news it was announced that within 10 years we will all have a chip in us for vital medical info, banking without cash, etc. But that's another story we have discussed here before. Hack into that chip and I suppose one could literally "control the world." :rolleyes2

Slick Black Cadillac
11-21-03, 01:58 AM
What about cameras at intersections that detect red light racers, runners, and in rare cases failure to use blinkers or yeild right of way. There is so much information gathered about us every day from what we buy to what we sleep on. I'll try not to even get into this new Homeland Security bill and the clauses that allow direct personal intrusion to monitor human "risks"

Ralph
11-21-03, 02:07 AM
How about the cameras on the highways that shoot your plates if you are speeding, and you get a ticket in the mail. What if you are passing some yokal and it clicks you. Sometimes, for safety sake, you have to go faster. Come to think of it, maybe in a few years we will have no need for a 300 hp Northstar if we can't speed.......................NAH!

Actually, for red-light runners, I probably don't think I mind that because back in 1984 I was t-boned at 35 mph. She ran a red light, and I have the use of my legs only because I was in a solid tank of a 1970 Plymouth Fury, and she had a 1972 Toyota! I still drove that car another year in highschool!

Slick Black Cadillac
11-21-03, 02:20 AM
You had mentioned Wal Mart tracking you throughout the store earlier. I also read that they were beginning to employ a new system with their Wal Mart Cards. The new shopping carts all have a small computer on the handle with a card swipe on it. When you gram a cart you swipe your card and based upon previous purchaces the computer continually displays reccomended products and current deals to you. As you move about the store sensors in the floor track your carts movement and market products in the isle you are near that it think you might like. What is to stop Wal Mart from selling your "preferences" to the company whose products you purchase most?

This is just Wal Marts version of "tracking" you. What sort of technology do you think the government is using on us right now? How long before it becomes cheap enough for bored local law enforcement gets ahold of it; and begins to enchroach upon our lives in a more thorough and scrutinous manner. Seems technology will see man to his greatest acheivement and complete his worst mistake.

maydog
11-21-03, 02:50 AM
I don't really know how the newer onstar systems work, my 97 has it integrated in the cell phone. I have no service and I leave the phone off so it is not a big issue.

The onstar system has to get power from somewhere, so there must be a way to shut it off. It may be a problem if it is highly integrated into the vehicle's other systems. Also, its based off of gps and cellular, so you should be able to disconnect the antennas from the reciever box and make it pretty much useless.

Ralph
11-21-03, 03:54 AM
You had mentioned Wal Mart tracking you throughout the store earlier. I also read that they were beginning to employ a new system with their Wal Mart Cards. The new shopping carts all have a small computer on the handle with a card swipe on it. When you gram a cart you swipe your card and based upon previous purchaces the computer continually displays reccomended products and current deals to you. As you move about the store sensors in the floor track your carts movement and market products in the isle you are near that it think you might like. What is to stop Wal Mart from selling your "preferences" to the company whose products you purchase most?

This is just Wal Marts version of "tracking" you. What sort of technology do you think the government is using on us right now? How long before it becomes cheap enough for bored local law enforcement gets ahold of it; and begins to enchroach upon our lives in a more thorough and scrutinous manner. Seems technology will see man to his greatest acheivement and complete his worst mistake.


When computers and technology start to make decisions for us, I say pull the plug, enough is enough. My stepdad will never use all of the technology that is built into his 2003 DTS. I had to set the seats for him. Idon't mind my 1991 that I got off him, it is technical, but not like the new ones. Onstar may have advantages, but dare I say, it has "other" functions you are not supposed to know about.

catbert
11-21-03, 11:32 PM
We had a company vehicle with Onstar on it; corporate used the system to track the vehicles location and routes to be shure it wasn't being used for unnessary personal use and that all sceduled stops were being made.

I also read in Popular Mechanics that the system can be used after an accident to dertimine vehicle speed, radio volume, seatbelt useage, blinker position, and ammout of braking force applied. Also if the vehicle is in a high speed pursuit, with a court order Onstar can kill the engine and lock the suspect the the car.

Where does the privacy invasion stop? Ever see the movie Demolition Man or Enemy of the State? How long will it be untill we prove George Orwell right?


Seems to me the items in your second paragragh are monitored by the cars computer, not On Star. Those items are monitored as part of traction control and air bag deployment, but are still stored for a period of time. That data has been subpoened by courts in criminal negligence cases. It is scary. I don't think On Star can kill the ignition, but we all know it can lock/unlock doors. bouncer:

tru504187211
11-22-03, 04:53 AM
Big Brother is watching...

kcnewell
11-22-03, 10:11 AM
You know, It's kind of funny.....When this site was pretty new I started a thread on this subject and was told by some of the bigmouth know it alls that know who they are that I was " being paranoid " They all thought it was ridiculous that I would think that the system was capable of being turned against them. I find it rather interesting that less than a year later there's a case of the very thing that I was telling them worried me about the system that has come to fruition. I said it then and I'll say it now " If you buy a car with onstar ( On-Spy ) The best thing you can do is disable it A.S.A.P.




For those of you who will inevetably say " If you're not doing anything wrong....What's the problem? " Save it for someone who doesn't believe in the RIGHT to privacy. The government will find a way to use it againt you eventually ( Particularly if it's liberals )

CBOYLE
11-22-03, 10:39 AM
You know, It's kind of funny.....When this site was pretty new I started a thread on this subject and was told by some of the bigmouth know it alls that know who they are that I was " being paranoid " They all thought it was ridiculous that I would think that the system was capable of being turned against them. I find it rather interesting that less than a year later there's a case of the very thing that I was telling them worried me about the system that has come to fruition. I said it then and I'll say it now " If you buy a car with onstar ( On-Spy ) The best thing you can do is disable it A.S.A.P.




For those of you who will inevetably say " If you're not doing anything wrong....What's the problem? " Save it for someone who doesn't believe in the RIGHT to privacy. The government will find a way to use it againt you eventually ( Particularly if it's liberals )

WE HAVE ONSTAR IN OUR 1999 SLS AND 2001 DTS!
WOULD NOT BE WITHOUT IT!
MY TWO CENTS
CHARLIE

Brett
11-22-03, 11:23 AM
Lets keep in mind that Onstar isnt creating any new opportunites for "Big Brother". In this case the feds could have just bugged the car, Onstar only made it easier. My concern is, with this news, will Cadillac finally lose the profitable wise-guy market :)

tru504187211
11-22-03, 12:26 PM
Don't lose the wiseguy market...remember Gotti's funeral procession?? Maybe no new opertunities from onstar, but new expanded laws, such as the expanded patriot act...some liberals will find a clause in it eventually where they can use onstar against anyone. This type of thing has happened before...funny, wide wording in laws- room for taking the law however you want to take it, right Jim Doyle??

El Dobro
11-22-03, 01:53 PM
I also heard of OnStar being used in divorce cases for tracking unfaithful spouses.
Now, just wait 'til they use EZPass times to start issuing speeding tickets.

cn2800
11-22-03, 04:19 PM
Here's a quick update on the FBI/Eavesdropping deal:
http://www.theregister.co.uk/content/55/34100.html

Ralph
11-22-03, 09:25 PM
You were never paranoid KC, you are just too darn logical! :coolgleam

The biggest thing the Wiseguys have to worry about is all those little glow in the dark trunk release pull thingys.

tru504187211
11-22-03, 11:21 PM
[QUOTE]The biggest thing the Wiseguys have to worry about is all those little glow in the dark trunk release pull thingys.
- Ralph

LOL...took me a minute to know what you are talkin about, but i seriously laughed loudly when i read that! :histeric:

kcnewell
11-22-03, 11:56 PM
The biggest thing the Wiseguys have to worry about is all those little glow in the dark trunk release pull thingys.

You just clip them off.....Simple, Yes?

Logandiagnostic
11-23-03, 01:14 AM
Its not the OnStar system that is the 'black box.' It is the SDM mounted in the car. The SDM is also the airbag module. Anyways here a copy/paste from another post....

'Interesting.....we actually provide this very service. Since 1994 GM has been using the airbag module as a recorder. Its actually called the SDM for 'Supplemental Diagnostic Module.'

Basically, the SDM records the vehicle data during the final 5 seconds before a vehicle airbag deployment. These are refered to 'events.' This is because in most cases when the airbag has deployed the car technically has not stopped and is still moving to some extent. Maybe another 5 feet or maybe over the edge of a cliff. So reconstuction is still required, but the stored data will sure give you some idea of who is telling you the truth.

There are 2 modes of recording in the SDM. In a airbag deployment the data is hard recorded. In other words there is no way the crash data can be cleared from the SDM. In all GM deployments the SDM must be replaced with the airbags. There is another type of event where there is data recorded but can be cleared with either a Vetronix CDR module or with 'x' number of key cycles. This is a situation where the car has some type of impact, but no deployment. Its a hard enough impact to where the 'SDM' wakes up and starts recording data.

Heres a 117 mph crash sample...

http://www.millerengineering.com/cdr-ex.gif

The 117mph data tells alot but not the whole story. The VSS sensor can only measure mph accurately in a reasonably straight line. So if the car is in a slide or spin this data can be misleading. Just an example how the data can be skewed.

As mentioned before we have this equipment that can retrieve this recorded data. It requires a very expensive Vetronix CDR module and a PC. The CDR module is about $2700 with a additional $400/per year subscription.

The current rule of thumb is the data belongs to the owner of the car. So is that you or the bank that holds the cars title? I dont know but the courts are certain to challange that at some point. If you are in a wreck it may be in your best interest to get this data before the car is destoyed. If you dont the police/insurance company/bank may do it for you.

Heres our website related to our crash data retrieval service-

http://www.crashdatainfo.com

There promises to be lots of controversy over this, as people figure out this data is just sitting there waiting to be used for or against them.

Logan'


Some would say they will simply destroy the SDM after a wreck. Dont....if the court finds that you destroyed the unit. Good chance you would be found guilty.

Logan

Ralph
11-23-03, 01:24 AM
You just clip them off.....Simple, Yes?


Sounds like experience talkin'. You scare me KC. :worship: :(

Caddy Man
11-23-03, 06:26 AM
i have a 2000 DTS but we do not subscribe or use onstart...would they still be able to control my car or eavesdrop in anyway? wouldnt i need to be registered with onstar for them to do any kind of trackin on me?

kcnewell
11-23-03, 02:48 PM
I would remove the antenna altogether......Or possibly disconnect it in side the car if that's possible.

elwesso
11-23-03, 03:30 PM
I took a look at the system on our GTP.... And it looks as if you can disconnect the antenna from the inside...... Theres also a box in the trunk that you could play with.......

Night Wolf
11-23-03, 07:53 PM
As far as I heard, it's the black recorder box that stores the info of driving styles, highest speed, etc. Have you heard about Wallmart announcing placing chips in all products so they can trace your location in store, and who knows where else? On the news it was announced that within 10 years we will all have a chip in us for vital medical info, banking without cash, etc. But that's another story we have discussed here before. Hack into that chip and I suppose one could literally "control the world." :rolleyes2

About the chip in the person thing, and how you would NEED it to buy food and stuff, and it would be advertised as something to make life really easy and everything....

..... I, for one am religous, and that is one of the things that will happen with the second coming........ it seems like that, and other things that are in the Bible are currently happening.... (the MIddle East getting along and uniting etc...)....... just things to kinda think about....

kcnewell
11-23-03, 08:45 PM
Chip in a person?.....I don't think so.

Ralph
11-23-03, 10:01 PM
Chip in a person?.....I don't think so.

Sorry Bud, it's already happening. It started with Pet Find in the States, now I heard that "Child Find" is doing it also! ie. in case your child becomes kidnapped or ? then they can be tracked. I thought we touched on this months ago. A buddy of mine in the military was shown a video about the U.S. Army in Florida, and it was their scientists that supposedly developed the thing. It is a long story, but they get into detail about how they didn't want to keep changing batteries in it because it would be implanted, etc. So they developed it to work on temp. fluctuations to recharge itself, so the best places to implant it supposedly is the back of the hand or the forehead. (you know, where your mother felt to see if you were sick) Take it as you want to, I don't care, but if you want to get really paranoid and talk of conspiracy theories, what does Revelations in the Bible say? It says the number of the Beast will be visable on the back of the hand or forehead!

Now supposedly the implanted chip would hold critical info like medical, blood type, also the General could track the troops, etc. I cannot remember all the details but also it would also be used to inject an adrenalin shot into the soldier/s with the press of a button behind a computer. Just what I heard, call me a crackpot if you will.

elwesso
11-23-03, 10:58 PM
As you know also, Im a christian, and this is kinda scary.... Oh well, in heaven I wont have to decide between cadillac and infiniti!!!!!

Night Wolf
11-24-03, 12:05 AM
yeah, we did talk about this awhile back.... but it could really be happening..... all I gotta say is, be prepared.... I hope my car can come with me.....

Ralph
11-24-03, 12:16 AM
Wes, Night Wolf, don't start placing too much emphasis in this, it does not mean the sky is falling! :bonkers:LOL. I'm certainly not trying to scare anyone.

Have you heard about the new nano technology? The Japanese have developed a cell phone so small an ant could use it!! Also, I think it was also the Japanese that developed some sort of tiny computer bug that if you have high cholesterol, it can be injected into your arteries and it feeds off the plaque that builds up! Don't you get these stories on American news? With technology being what it is, and the move towards miniturization of everything, how could it not be going in this direction? We know that you can buy those tiny spy cameras, as well as those new cell phones that can take a picture while you are on the phone. That one will be controversial, I bet.

92_Deville_on_20's
11-24-03, 08:00 AM
It sucks that they can do that but onstar does work really well to track your car it was ever stolen.

I theory is if you are not doing nothing then you got nothing to worry about.

kcnewell
11-25-03, 12:37 AM
It sucks that they can do that but onstar does work really well to track your car it was ever stolen.

I theory is if you are not doing nothing then you got nothing to worry about.


That's the exact mentality that will end freedom as we know it.....Oh well, If you're not doing anything wrong then what's the difference if big brother's watching? Till big brother makes a law against what you do! We ( As a society ) are so damned stupid that we let the government whittle away at our liberties until one day we're gonna wake up and find ourselves living in a totalitarian state and then we're gonna be asking.....How the hell did this happen?


Some of us will be in the unfortunate position of already knowing.



The bright side will be being able to say " I told you so" ( Small consolation )

kempie
11-26-03, 01:00 AM
So that guy I saw wearing the aluminum foil hat isnt crazey. He's just an OnStar owner.
I havent done anything illegal, other than speeding, in 20 years or so but that would still bother me.
Seems for each step you take for more security you give up a little more freedom.
This is just a case of "what it's worth to you". BUT seems there should be some disclaimers with the OS system.

Vesicant
11-26-03, 06:17 PM
Heh, well we dont exactly know if it can kill the iginition or not.. but being that its connected to so many other systems of the car, it'd be pretty easy for some onstar advisor overlooked by say a police officer to enter a custom code that kills the electrical or stops some vital process in the ECM that kills the engine.

IF we're so worried about onstar, just hope that in the future they wont be tracking your speed 24/7 and use it to stop law breakers constantly, otherwise it'd be a mess. How many times can you count that youve gone even Remotley over the speed limit? ITs too simple to be true, but its possible that it could happen in the future.

Brings new meaning to invasion of privacy.

Ralph
11-26-03, 10:55 PM
Good observation Jeffry, I'm sure they will try to pass some laws in the near future to allow law enforcement to monitor speeds, etc.

slc
05-11-06, 09:49 AM
In our case, its I-Pass, and they have already warned that they WILL use the I-Pass system to track speeders, mail comes, Thank You for that nice ticket. GRRRSHfufmgjFDUFH......

Onstar is integrated just as everything is in a Cadillac. its the wave of the future.

The dissadvantage of disconnecting the OnSpy is if your car is stolen, it cannot be tracked. You DO want your car back, don't you?

Ok, look at it this way, Do You REALLY beleive that when you are on the cell phone, no one else can hear you?

When you are on the internet in chat room or surfing, Do You REALLY beleive that you are not being tracked or your sites you are visiting are not being recorded?

The BIG EAR device that people use to hear what is being said across the room or a stadium. TRUE OR FALSE?? TRUE

Is everything you say being taped, even at home? Could be.

Hell, on TV they said Law Enfarcement now has a device that lets them SEE INSIDE your home. Thats with windows and shades closed, doors locked. This thing sees through the walls.

Interesting? yeah. Beleivable? Well, THEY don't want you to think so.

Just some food for thought. LOLOLOLOL

Keep moving forward, Never look Back.

Randy_W
05-17-06, 07:46 AM
Why do you consider it a big deal that they used OnStar to track criminals? They do it every day with cell phones and land lines and have for years! Why is it worse if they do it with OnStar??:confused:

El Dobro
05-20-06, 01:11 PM
Why do you consider it a big deal that they used OnStar to track criminals? They do it every day with cell phones and land lines and have for years! Why is it worse if they do it with OnStar??:confused:

And computers.

noahsdad
05-21-06, 08:27 AM
I have several friends in law enforcement, at local and federal levels, and this kind of discussion just drives them crazy. The media always makes it sound like "Joe FBI agent" can simply stroll into OnStar with a warrant (which of course he just filled out from a stack of blanks he keeps in the car) and gets carte' blanche access to listen in on everything he wants. That's total BS!

Point One: Any officer seeking a warrant has to jump through a huge number of hoops, with hours of investigation and paperwork, and he must be VERY specific about what is suspected and VERY specific about what he is seeking. Anything gathered outside the warrant parameters is inadmissable in court. Less than half of warrants requested are granted.

Point two: The story upon which this thread began isn't even about OnStar! This case involved Tele-trak, which is built into Mercedes vehicles. OnStar has been used in theft recovery (one reason to buy it), and a handful of capital murder and conspiracy cases, and then only to track movements of suspects. Unfaithful spouses cannot be tracked by their husband/wife. That's a civil, not a criminal matter. Do you honestly believe that OnStar wants the reputation of being an open-door shill for Big Brother?

Point three: Since the early 80s, televisions and cable boxes have been made with record/report chips that keep data on the channels you watch, and how long you watch them, and reports the information regularly through your cable. That information is routinely available to networks, programmers, and advertisers. If you use a Windows computer, it calls the mother ship in Redmond any time you make changes to your system. They know the software you have installed and removed, how often you use your system, what you do when you use it, and a complete record of all the websites you visit. Anyone with a $99 Radio Shack programmable scanner can listen in on all of your phone conversations, whether cel or your home cordless phone. Data is being gathered regardless of what you do these days, but who do you think has the time - or really cares - to accumulate and analyze the mountain of information about you? In short, the information is there, but is anybody really watching?

The point is, it's not the government that's taking away our personal privacy, it's our own demand for better, faster, more efficient technology.
If you want anonymity, it's pretty easy: don't have a computer, phone, television, OnStar, a bank account, credit card, property, a job, driver's license, social security number, library card, or permanant address. Don't belong to any religion, club or civic group. Build yourself a cabin in the mountains, never talk to anyone, and enjoy your freedom.

jeffree
06-04-06, 05:25 AM
Hi Riccko!
Apparently you have to post at least 50 posts to send a PM on this site, so I'm writing here in hopes of getting a message to you... then I saw this post... did you know that the gov't can and has the technology, and probably DOES, listen thru your telephone speaker in your house? That's right... my dad worked for pacBell in the 70s, and showed me how its done... apparently the fone handset only turns off the speaker and not the receiver!

But back to why I'm writing. I'm an old friend of Mucci, and was just trying to get him to drop me a line, or to get in touch with him... we were ol' mates from the late 80s in downtown here's sketch he drew of me : www.gashaus.com/bme_by_mucci.jpg

It would be great if I could here back from him, as its been some time, I'm married now, living in Singapore... he can reach me at jdb@gashaus.com or +65 98806520.
Thanks, and you got some nice vehicles there... hit the road babay!