Ford Authority

FCC Chair Says Domestic Abuse Law Should Apply To Automakers

Ford and many other large corporations have been under fire recently for their respective privacy practices, which have even prompted legal cases in select parts of the world. Ford CEO Jim Farley previously admitted that data sharing and privacy are sources of tension as companies work to better personalize products while also taking advantage of the simple fact that in today’s world, data is extremely valuable. Back in January, Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel wrote a letter to a number of wireless service carriers and automakers – including Ford – seeking help in her mission to protect domestic abuse survivors from the misuse of connected vehicle tools by abusers, specifically, and now, she’s also noting that a new rule pertaining to that same topic should apply to automakers as well, according to Reuters.

Rosenworcel wants a telecommunications law – the Safe Connections Act – which is intended to protect domestic violence survivors – to also apply to automakers that sell internet-connected vehicles, which is the basis of her newly proposed rule. Currently, the FCC requires telecom providers to separate family plans that have an abuser on the account, and given a recent rise in connected vehicle features being used in such cases, the agency is now shining a light on the automotive industry, too.

According to Rosenworcel, this type of pattern previously seen in the telecom industry is now making its way to connected vehicles, which is precisely why she’s circulating a “notice of proposed rulemaking” to other commissioners that would include certain types of vehicles in the aforementioned law. If the measure is adopted, it would then open up for public comments. At the same time, the chairwoman is open to feedback on ways car service providers can protect domestic abuse survivors.

It’s worth noting that Ford has taken steps to prevent its vehicles from being used by domestic abusers over the past several months. “As part of Ford’s commitment to customer privacy, we provide several ways to turn off access to vehicle location,” Ford spokesperson Alan Hall told Ford Authority earlier this year. “Anyone who is concerned about tracking for purposes of domestic abuse or otherwise, has options using just the touchscreen controls in the vehicle to turn off connectivity, turn off location data sharing, and disassociate the vehicle from the smartphone app, which cannot be reversed remotely,”

We’ll have more on this soon, so be sure and subscribe to Ford Authority for non-stop Ford news coverage.

Brett's lost track of all the Fords he's owned over the years and how much he's spent modifying them, but his current money pits include an S550 Mustang and 13th gen F-150.

Subscribe to Ford Authority

For around-the-clock Ford news coverage

We'll send you one email per day with the latest Ford updates. It's totally free.


  1. Dave Mathers

    The problem with the driver cancelling the connectivity is that not all drivers know how to do that.


Leave a comment