In-Car Cameras Are Now Watching Every Little Thing You Do

Privacy is a thing of the past

The days when you could jump into your car and drive off to get a little privacy and alone time appear to be well gone.

That’s because cameras that were put in cars to catch drivers falling asleep are now catching…well, everything.

Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute have now developed a smart-car camera system that can “figure out exactly what a driver is doing,” according to a new Gizmodo report.

And already the camera is being positioned as “potentially improving the safety of semi-autonomous driving features” and a feature that could help drivers in semi-autonomous vehicles pay attention to the road.

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The “appeal” of these points is what prompted the Fraunhofer Institute of Optronics, System Technologies and Image Exploitation to come up with a camera that uses AI-powered image recognition to construct a digital sketch of the driver – which then, in turn, provides enough details for the system to guess what the driver is doing. The system can determine things like when a driver is sipping a cup of coffee or looking at their phone.

The vehicle can then make a determination if the driver is paying attention, prompting a semi-autonomous system to determine how distracted they could be.

Eventually, researchers want to expand the system to be able to recognize when a driver points to a certain direction in situations like automated parking.