Toll Stations can be replaced by GPS

1984 big brother gpsBig Brother is Watching You. Photo: Virgin Films

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Toll Stations can be replaced by GPS in Norway

In a few years, the number of kilometres driven can determine how much you must pay in road taxes to the Norwegian Treasury. The Data Inspectorate yields and gives the green light to GPS measurements.

 

Several political parties and some car organisations have for a long time agreed that satellite-based road pricing, where motorists pay for how many kilometres the car drives, should replace today’s Toll Stations, writes Aftenposten.

This is by no means the first time the Inspectorate yields to what many perceive as a violation of their privacy.

Such a system can replace the current fee system with tolls, fuel charges, registration fees and traffic insurance fees. One challenge has been to safeguard the privacy, but the Data Inspectorate now believes that this can be solved. This means that road pricing may be implemented in five to six years time.

Privacy concerns can be solved

“Yes, we believe the challenge between road pricing and privacy can be solved, the Data Inspectorate’s Director,” Bjørn Erik Thon tells Aftenposten.

“Interesting technical solutions have already been launched for a road pricing system that addresses the challenges regarding privacy. Much of the technology is already in place,” he asserts.

The Ministry of Transport and Communications is conducting an evaluation of road pricing. albeit only for heavy transport for the time being. Thon proposes that the Norwegian Parliament establish a committee that will examine a completely different solution for road pricing that safeguards privacy.

In the Government negotiations that are now underway at Hadeland, the Christian Democrats (KrF) and the Liberals (Venstre) are promoting such a committee to become part of a possible Government platform. Last autumn, KrF delivered a representative proposal where the party proposes that the Parliament asks the Government to investigate and plan the introduction of GPS-based road pricing. Abid Q. Raja (Liberals) recently stated that the Liberal Party also wants to replace Toll Stations with road pricing as soon as the privacy challenges are solved. On Tuesday, January 8th, there is a hearing in the Norwegian Parliament on the issue.

How a system which basically reveals where you are at any given time, can provide safeguarding of your privacy, is indeed a very large challenge to solve.


© NTB Scanpix / #Norway Today
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