For a few years, Tesla employees shared pictures and videos that were taken by the cameras installed on car owners’ cars. Ex-employees revealed to Reuters that these photos and videos were shared via group chats or even one-on-one conversations between 2019 and 2020.
A video was shared of a Tesla car driving really fast and hitting a kid who was on a bike. Then other videos had someone with no clothes walking to the car, plus people doing laundry and stuff like that – even pictures of the kids! That’s what one past employee said about the whole thing.
Some workers shared videos taken inside the garages of Tesla car owners. One video reportedly showed a fancy white Lotus Esprit from the 1977 James Bond movie “The Spy Who Loved Me”. What’s odd is that Tesla CEO Elon Musk bought this same exact car ten years ago. This means that his employees were sending around footage of his own vehicle in his personal garage!
One of the ex-employees said that the act of sharing images was wrong and it made them not want to buy a Tesla. They joked about this, saying that it violated people’s privacy.
Tesla builds cars that have 8 cameras on them. These cameras help with features like Autopilot, Smart Summon and Autopark. They also help keep the car safe by recording videos of any people who come close or do something suspicious around your Tesla while it’s parked.
Tesla, the company, said that their camera system was designed to keep customers’ privacy protected. Even if the amazing camera recordings are shared for “fleet learning”, those recordings will remain anonymous and not linked to you or your car- unless it is due to an emergency situation like a crash or airbag deployment. A Tesla worker also confirmed that data labelers can check out where the footage was taken on Google Maps.
Tesla does not have someone who you can talk to when you want to make a comment.