Carmakers are collecting data and cashing in – and most drivers have no clue

Vehicles are increasingly coming connected with Wi-Fi and may know more about you than you think – where you’ve been, what you’re listening to and what kind of coffee you like. All information that privacy advocates are warning may end up in the hands of advertisers or even your insurance company.

Under the hood of one car, Ford’s former head of tech John Ellis found four computers. Inside the car, he hooked up his smart phone to show the data streaming in real time.

“With enough data, I can discern patterns that seem to be almost non-existent to the human eye,” Ellis said.

From the brakes to the windshield wipers, with as many as 100 points that generate data, today’s cars pack the power of 20 personal computers and can process up to 25 gigs of data every hour – some of it beamed back.