If you own a Subaru vehicle that features the Starlink connected services, you might be wondering whether or not you should allow the system to access your files and information. While these services do offer a number of benefits, it’s also important to consider the potential risks involved with allowing access.
In this article, we’ll take a closer look at the types of files and information that Starlink is accessing, as well as the benefits and risks of allowing access. We’ll also provide some tips for managing access to your files and information, as well as how to turn off Starlink access completely.
What is Starlink Connected Services?
Before we dive into the details of file access, let’s first explain what Starlink Connected Services are. These services are designed to offer Subaru drivers a range of features and benefits, including:
- Remote engine start/stop
- Vehicle location tracking
- Automatic collision notification
- Stolen vehicle recovery
- SOS emergency assistance
- Concierge services
- And more
To access these features, the system needs to communicate with the vehicle’s onboard computer and sensors. This requires the sharing of certain files and information.
What Files and Information Does Starlink Access?
According to Subaru, Starlink accesses the following types of files and information:
- Vehicle identification number (VIN)
- Diagnostic trouble codes (DTCs)
- GPS location
- Vehicle speed
- Acceleration data
- Brake operation data
- Seatbelt use
- Airbag deployment
- Fuel consumption
- Battery status
It’s worth noting that Starlink does not access any personal information, such as your name, address, or contact details.
The Benefits of Allowing Access
Now that we know what files and information Starlink is accessing, let’s take a look at some of the potential benefits of allowing access:
Improved Vehicle Performance
By accessing diagnostic trouble codes and other data, Starlink can help identify any potential issues with your vehicle before they become bigger problems. This can help keep your vehicle running smoothly and safely.
Enhanced Safety Features
Features like automatic collision notification and SOS emergency assistance can be life-saving in the event of an accident or emergency situation.
Stolen vehicle recovery and other security features can help protect your vehicle from theft and damage.
Convenient Connected Services
Remote engine start/stop and concierge services can add convenience to your daily driving experience.
The Risks of Allowing Access
While there are certainly benefits to allowing Starlink access to your files and information, there are also some potential risks that should be considered:
Sharing data with any third-party service can increase the risk of your personal information being accidentally exposed or intentionally misused. While Subaru is committed to protecting the privacy and security of the data it collects, there is always a chance for breaches or misuse.
Because Starlink communicates with the vehicle’s onboard computer, there is a potential risk for malicious actors to exploit vulnerabilities in the system and gain unauthorized access to your vehicle.
How to Manage Access to Files and Information
If you’re still unsure about whether or not to allow Starlink access to your files and information, there are some steps you can take to manage this access:
Limit Your Sharing Settings
In most cases, you can choose to limit the amount of data being shared with connected services. Consider disabling features that aren’t essential or that you’re uncomfortable with.
Keep Your System Up-to-Date
Make sure to keep your vehicle’s onboard computer and operating system up-to-date with the latest firmware and security patches.
Turning Off Starlink Access
If you decide that you no longer want to allow Starlink access to your files and information, you can turn off the service completely. Here’s how:
- From the home screen of your vehicle’s touchscreen display, select "Settings."
- From the "Settings" menu, select "Starlink Privacy."
- Select the "Information Sharing" option.
- Toggle the "Information Sharing" switch to the off position.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is Starlink Access Required for Basic Functionality?
No, Starlink access is not required for basic vehicle functionality. However, certain connected services may require access to certain files and information to function properly.
Can I Choose Which Files and Information to Share?
In most cases, yes. You can choose to limit the amount of data being shared with connected services.
Is My Personal Information Safe with Starlink?
While Subaru is committed to protecting your privacy and the security of your data, there is always a potential risk of exposure or misuse.
So, should you allow Subaru Starlink access to your files? Ultimately, the decision is up to you. While there are certainly benefits to having access to these services, there are also some potential risks that should be considered. By understanding what files and information Starlink is accessing, and taking steps to manage this access, you can make an informed decision about what’s best for you and your vehicle.