A feature in Forbes looks at the issue of “cartapping,” a growing practice in which police forces use connected car devices to capture criminals. A few examples from the story:A 2014 warrant allowed New York police to trace a vehicle by demanding SiriusXM activate and monitor the radio installed on the target vehicle as a tracking device for a period of 10 days. According to the story, “SiriusXM … complied with the order and did so by switching on the stolen vehicle recovery feature of its Connected Vehicle Services technology, [which is] available in a subset of cars it supplies.”In December 2009, police asked GM to hand over OnStar data from a vehicle rented by a suspected crack dealer. Police did not know what the car “looked like or where it was” but with OnStar tracking they could follow him from Houston to Louisiana. According to the story, “OnStar’s tracking was accurate enough to allow police to identify that vehicle among the many that were on Interstate 20 that evening.”In July 2016 a “… 12-year-old girl was in a car involved in a high-speed chase, with her 7-year-old sister as a passenger.” Police used OnStar to, “… disable the engine as the juvenile drove into a high school car park,” according to the story.- Volvo admitted this past week that the company’s Large Animal Detection system doesn’t work in the case of kangaroos. The system—developed in Sweden—can identify and avoid, “deer, elk and caribou,” but not Australian marsupials. Testing of the vehicle down under finds the device cannot, “… adjust to the kangaroo’s unique method of movement,” according to a report by The Guardian. Volvo’s Australian technical manager appeared on ABC in Australia to explain that the troubles had arisen because, “… their cars’ object detection systems used the ground as a reference point … when it’s in the air, it actually looks like it’s further away, then it lands and it looks closer.” As a result the cars were unable to process the movement. Modern AVs, of course, rely on learning-based software rather than rules-based software. They need to experience situations and then work those situations into the way the program works. It looks like those cars will need a little more experience in Australia.- Volvo also has a new anti-collision device that will run a car off the road instead of rear-ending a car in front of it. According to the same report, the cars can automatically maintain a safe distance from the vehicle in front, and, “… spot potential collisions in urban environments, a feature called ‘run-off road assist’, which would keep passengers safe in near-collisions.”- The US House Energy and Commerce Committee is debating a measure that would allow the, “… US Secretary of Transportation to designate up to 100,000 cars annually that would be exempt from the existing Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard.” The current limit on the exception is 2,500 cars per year.