Tesla Whistleblower Leaks 100GB of Data, Revealing Safety Complaints

Informants have released data that includes thousands of safety complaints the company has received about its self-driving capability, as well as sensitive information regarding current and past employees.

Dark Reading Staff, Dark Reading

May 26, 2023

1 Min Read
Tesla Model S electric car showcased at the Brussels Motor Show.
Source: VDWI Automotive via Alamy Stock Photo

German newspaper Handelsbatt reported today that it received 100GB of data from informants at Tesla, containing information on the thousands of complaints the car manufacturer has received throughout the past years regarding its Autopilot self-driving feature.

The collection of data contains 23,000 internal files spanning from 2015 to 2022, detailing how Tesla allegedly received 3,900 reports of self-acceleration and brake function issues, including involuntary emergency braking and phantom stops due to false collision warnings. In addition to this, the files also contain more than 1,000 crash reports and "a table of 3,000 incidents wherein drivers expressed safety concerns about Tesla's driver assistance system."

These incidents primarily occurred in the United States, though some complaints also came from Tesla owners in Europe and Asia.

The files also include personal identifiable information (PII) such as Social Security numbers, salaries, private email addresses, and bank details on more than 100,000 former and current employees, including Tesla CEO Elon Musk himself.

Data-protection watchdogs located in the Netherlands stated that they are looking into the leak. According to Brandenburg data protection officer Dagmar Hartge, who described the leak as "massive," Dutch authorities will have several weeks to decide on whether to continue the proceedings on the case according to European procedures. 

"I can't remember such a scale," Hartge said in regard to the gravity of the leak.

For Tesla's part, the car manufacturing company has made no public statements as of this posting.

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Dark Reading Staff

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