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Tesla owners ask for a “Ride Share Mode” that protects their privacy while renting out their vehicles


Last week a Tesla owner rented out his vehicle on Turo and the messages he received from the renter were a bit worrying. The person renting the car via the ride-sharing service was easily able to know in which city the owner of this Tesla lives.

Ethan Joseph, the owner of this Tesla vehicle also left the footage of his garage, dog, and other Teslas that he owns on the vehicle’s system. The renter was nice enough to ask Ethan if he should delete all this footage to protect his privacy. This does not happen every time though, someone can misuse this personal information with bad intentions.

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The car actually had all of the previous destinations that the Tesla owner had gone to — saved in the navigation system as well. To strangers and bad people, this information can be very useful.

Ethan posted a tweet with a screenshot of his conversation with the renter asking Tesla and its Technoking Elon Musk to solve this privacy issue.

Conversation between Tesla owner Ethan Joseph and the renter of his car about the private information and footage that was visible to the renter. Credit: Ethan Joseph / Twitter.

Related: Tesla Model 3 owner catches a body shop replacing his car parts after renting it on Turo (video)

Some tips by a Tesla owner to protect your privacy before renting out your Tesla Model S, 3, X, Y.

The renter in this case was a smart user who seems to already have a Tesla vehicle on order and he has been researching Teslas for a while, so he knows how to access all this information and media like Sentry Mode footage, etc.

Of course, Tesla renters like this one will be able to dig a lot of private information regarding the owner and previous users of the vehicle with very little effort.

Therefore, Tesla owners ask the automaker to introduce a Ride Share Mode to protect their data. As soon as the vehicle is in Ride Share Mode, all the information and footage associated with existing cloud-based profiles should be locked and inaccessible by the renters.

Tesla can introduce this feature via an over-the-air update and it should not be a big deal for a company with Tesla’s expertise in software development.

The closest to this wishlist feature is the Transport Mode, which blocks most of the features on the center touchscreen while the vehicle is in transit domestically on trailers and on ships.

Although Tesla has installed a cabin camera in their vehicles to monitor physical damage and vandalism by the renters and occupants — the automaker should protect the privacy of its customers as well.

Let us know your valuable suggestions in the comments section below on if Tesla should introduce such a privacy mode for owners willing to rent out their vehicles and what it should be named.

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By Iqtidar Ali

Iqtidar has been writing about Tesla, Elon Musk, and EVs for more than 3 years on, many of his articles have been republished on CleanTechnica and InsideEVs, maintains a healthy relationship with the Tesla community across the Social Media sphere. You can reach him on Twitter @IqtidarAlii