Are billboards spying on you? Lawmakers want technology investigated

(WFLA) – Are billboards spying on you? Senator Chuck Schumer, (D) – New York, wants the Federal Trade Commission to investigate new technology that allows billboard companies to track travel patterns and habits of drivers with cell phones.

Clear Channel Outdoor created the new billboard technology, called RADAR, and has partnerships with other companies including AT&T. The company insists it keeps data it collects anonymous. But reveals it can track travel patterns, habits, and determine whether people are visiting certain destinations.

The company then provides the data to advertisers so companies can decide where to target ads.

Sen. Schumer worries about privacy.

“Your personal cell phone should not become a James Bond-like gadget that’s used against you by some company,” he said.

Sen. Schumer believes people impacted should be able to decide whether they’re willing to be tracked.

Clear Channel Outdoor has billboards in Tampa Bay, but it is not clear whether they’re equipped with the new technology.

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