OnStar has recently amended its terms and conditions and, in the process, raised more than a few eyebrows from its customers as well as industry pundits. Specifically, GM’s telematics subsidiary has changed the manner in which it legally can collect location (GPS) data on your OnStar-equipped vehicle, among other items.
Prior to the updated terms, OnStar only gave itself permission to collect location data during a theft recovery or while deploying emergency services to the vehicle — both services offered by OnStar. But the update now allows OnStar to collect and sell personal, yet anonymous, information to third parties regarding the vehicle using the OnStar service, including location, seat belt usage, speed, as well as other particulars.
What’s more OnStar’s latest terms and conditions state that it continues to collect said data even after the subscriber cancels their service, since the two-way data connection between the vehicle and OnStar is still in place. If one wishes to opt out of the data collection procedures all together, one would have to specifically request to deactivate the data connection by pressing the blue OnStar button or calling 1 888 4 ONSTAR and speaking to a representative.
That process could take up to sixty days, the terms state. During the time that the service is still active within those sixty days, data may still continue to be collected from the vehicle.
Feel free to grab the updated 26-page Terms of Service document (PDF) in its entirety here.
Update: to the timely upheaval of OnStar subscribers and web junkies all over the nation, OnStar has released a statement about its newest set of terms and conditions: