Question: To WHAT is this personalized plate referring? The car or its owner? (Pic by Peter Aranyi)

I really hope I don’t blow anyone’s cover or alibi by telling you I spotted this vanity number plate GNUINE on a car at Pakuranga Plaza this afternoon.

Given that we occasionally discuss quirky number plates here now and then, and that I’ve been writing an article about some people who I have discovered seem to be anything but GNUINE (and their anything-but-genuine marketing claims), it caught my eye.

Here’s the time & location data for the photo (shock horror)

If enabled, this data is embedded in the jpeg ... and sometimes survives uploading to the web, or emailing.

… which neatly raises the issue of this data being inadvertently shared with people you didn’t intend to share it with. In this case you can see latitude and longitude info — where my iPhone (and me, it’s safe to presume) was at 12.06 pm today.

As if you care.

I can interrogate the photo further and call those coordinates up in Google maps (just a few clicks) and get very fine detail (see below).

People and some government agencies imagine all sorts of fears and concerns about this.

From my point of view unless you’re ripping off your employer or a government agency paying you on the basis that you should be somewhere other than where you say you are or where you should be, what the hell? I don’t think most of the concerns are GNUINE issues.

Where's Wally? Well, at midday he was near where that green arrow is pointing. Cool!

I personally prefer the practical anonymity/blandness of non-personalised plates … although I know a very nice JULIA B who wears hers well.

– P