State Will Keep Information Gathered Through Open Tolling For Years

BOSTON (CBS) – When drivers whiz through those new open toll gantries on the Mass. Pike, they light up like the paparazzi with multiple cameras flashing.

It makes drivers like Raymond Wolfe from Boston a little uncomfortable. “It’s your personal information,” he says. “I don’t trust them with it.”

The MassDOT Board has now approved a plan to keep information collected through electronic tolling for different lengths of time.

“We need to be able to produce a document to prove that you were there at that time, so that the information we’re sending you on the invoice is matched by other evidence to prove that you owe the taxpayers of the Commonwealth money,” said Thomas Tinlin, MassDOT Administrator.

The state will keep information about what trips you take on its highways for seven years. It will keep speed data for a month, pictures for three months to seven years, and video for 180 days.

Some say it’s worth the ease the new technology affords. “I think it’s pretty secure,” said Cindy Nemet. “I’m not concerned.”

But others see the gantries as the highway system’s big metal version of Big Brother. “I think everybody’s got privacy concerns with what’s going on. It’s a trust thing.”

The state will also keep what’s called a “hot list” of drivers red flagged by law enforcement for things like Amber Alerts or terrorism concerns. Officials will hold onto hot list drivers’ tolling information for no more than 30 days.

The new open tolling system goes online October 28th.

More from Christina Hager

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