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DOTs May Start Tracking Drivers by Cell Phone

October 20, 2005

Tracking drivers through their cell phones could be the new trend in monitoring traffic congestion and road conditions, according to a report from the Associated Press.The Missouri Department of Transportation, currently negotiating with private contractors, is looking to provide traffic conditions on 5,500 miles of road through the movement of drivers by monitoring their cell phonesOfficials say that the information will be recorded anonymously without the possibility of tracking specific, avoiding and issues of invasion of privacy, the report said.Some disagree, though, claiming that this is a move toward using technology to track people.Some similar projects, however, are already underway in Baltimore, Norfolk, Va., and a portion of Interstate 75 south of Atlanta. The Missouri project is the biggest, though, tracking wireless phones across the state with the intent of passing that information on to other drivers.Many new cell phones come with GPS, but this system can monitor a wireless phone without those capabilities, according to the AP report. But privacy experts worry what the program could evolve into.
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