By Kurtis Ming

SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — Your car could one day snitch on you if you misbehave, with technology that could call the cops on you.

The company behind the technology says it will keep people safe, but is it an invasion of privacy?

Even if your car drives itself, you can still get busted for drinking, texting, or sleeping because if your car malfunctions, you have to be able to take over.

Police say the driver barreling down the 101 in Redwood City at 70 miles per hour on autopilot in November was drunk and asleep. It was science fiction nearly three decades ago when California’s future governor was forced to take control of the robot taxi in Total Recall.

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Now Chinese tech giant Huawei is working to keep driver’s honest by developing technology to detect if you’re drunk, tired, distracted, or have a bad case of road rage.

A camera trained on your face looks for clues that you’re impaired and listens for things like slurred speech. It can then lock the car’s controls or call the cops on you.

The CHP says it’s too early to weigh in on the concept, saying they don’t want to speculate about technology that might arrive in the future. But privacy advocates say constant surveillance is dangerous.

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“It’s not just were you slurring your speech? It’s how fast are you driving and where were you going and where did you stop,” said Robin Swanson with Californians for  Consumer Privacy.

That’s information they’re afraid could be sold.

“Once it leaves our hands that is the bigger question and that is where consumers are demanding the right to know,” Swanson said.

A new state law going into effect next year requires companies to tell consumers what personal information is being collected and who sees it. You will have the right to opt out as well.

Comments (6)
  1. The Chinese company, Huawei, is involved in this invasion of privacy? And people wonder why there’s concern about Huawei hardware being used in the next generation 5g network.

  2. Bill Loyal says:

    And this is the NUMBER ONE reason to own no self drive, automated , voice activated anything.. PRIVACY. No, I am not going to break the law, but if I do by mistake, I sure as hell will get away with it without R2D2 calling the cops on me.

  3. Jeremy Mccool says:

    what’s the point in having self-driving cars if you can’t do other things while driving?

  4. Marc Kort says:

    anyone who would voluntarily allow this to be in their car is a fool,

    Those who would give up Essential Liberty
    to purchase a little Temporary Safety,
    deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.

  5. Richard Stenger says:

    I first read this on the Drudge Report. Then I went to for more real news from California.

  6. Jim Thomas says:

    “keep driver’s honest”? Was this edited by a three-year old?

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