According to a document obtained by Motherboard, a tiny surveillance contractor based in Charleston, South Carolina, can locate and track newer model cars in any country. This data is being packaged up into a new service and pitched to the US government as a powerful surveillance technology.
“Ulysses can provide our clients with the ability to remotely geo-locate vehicles in nearly every country except for North Korea and Cuba on a near real-time basis,” the document written by The Ulysses Group, reads. “Currently, we can access over 15 billion vehicle locations around the world every month,” the document adds.
In new automobiles, intelligent sensors transmit an array of data (even including location) to the automaker or third parties. Aggregator companies then take this data and integrate them into packages based on the needs of their clients.
“Vehicle telematics is data transmitted from the vehicle to the automaker or OEM through embedded communications systems in the car,” the Ulysses document continues. “Among the thousands of other data points, vehicle location data is transmitted on a constant and near real-time basis while the vehicle is operating.”
The document suggests Ulysses’ tracking service could be used for military surveillance operations:
“We believe that this one attribute will dramatically enhance military intelligence and operational capabilities, as well as reduce the costs and risk footprint of ISR [intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance] assets currently used to search for and acquire mobile targets of interest.”
“Whether you want to geo-locate one vehicle or 25.000.000 as shown here. Currently, we can access over 15 billion vehicle locations around the world every month,” the document concludes.