Customers in Seattle and Los Angeles among those affected.
As cars become increasingly connected, so too do the risks involved. With data privacy a concern for consumers everywhere (think back to last year's ugly Facebook-Cambridge Analytica scandal) there are a few anxious Mercedes-Benz owners out there after a glitch with the brand's car-connected app was discovered. The issue occurred this past Friday when some owners accessed their Mercedes Me apps, only to unintentionally access data from other Mercedes car owners. Not what you want happening when trying to remote-park your Mercedes-Benz S-Class at the golf club.
Affected customers, including someone in Seattle, had information such as their name, phone numbers, location data, and recent activity displayed to someone else in an entirely different location. Upon contacting a Mercedes customer service center, customers were told to delete the app. Speaking on behalf of Daimler, the parent company of Mercedes-Benz, a spokesperson confirmed: "There was a short interval (on Friday) during which incorrect customer data was displayed on our Mercedes Me app. The information displayed was cached information - not real-time access to the account."
With over 100,000 Mercedes-Benz owners having installed the popular app, users will be relieved that at least others couldn't view their financial information or live location. It also wasn't possible for one user to directly interact with another. As soon as Mercedes was made aware of the issue, swift action was taken to take the system down and resolve the glitch. Still, the event does raise some concerns about how secure car-connected apps are, especially since these apps typically house live location data.
Will the recent glitch deter owners? Well, those who do decide to exercise caution will be losing out on a lot of great features, with owners of everything from a Mercedes-Benz A-Class to fired-up AMG models being able to use Mercedes Me to access concierge services, navigation with real-time information, remote parking assist (on selected models), and much more. Mercedes will no doubt want to remain on high alert to avoid a similar - or worse - data leak in the future.