Ski Pass That Tracks Raises Privacy Concerns

KEYSTONE, Colo. (CBS4) – Vail Resorts is offering something new with its ski passes this season. It allows skiers and riders to keep track of the runs they’ve used. But the new program is also raising some questions about privacy.

“It actually captures skiers’ vertical feet through RF technology on the slopes,” Ryan Whaley with Keystone Resort said.

The program is called “Epic Mix.” A chip inside each season pass is activated every time a skier goes through a gate and onto a chairlift. Over the course of a season it records how many days a person skied and much they skied within those days.

It’s already recorded an impressive number.

“More than anything it allows skiers to create a goal; ‘I want to ski all five mountains this year; I want to ski one day at Keystone, one day at Breck.’ You can just track that sort of thing,” Whaley said.

“You just go online and you look it up and you know,” Epic Pass holder Julian Caler said.

Tracking an entire ski season is something hardcore mountain-goers have been craving.

“I’ve been wanting a GPS to do this for years, but now that Vail has incorporated it … it’s pretty nice,” Epic Pass holder Adam Jones said.

The results are only seen by the pass holder. They are posted online and are private. The resort doesn’t have access to where the pass holder has been.

Pass holders can opt out of the program entirely, but it could serve a practical function for families that are separated on the mountain.

“If a child wanders away on a slope or something like that … you would be able to go onto Mix and find out where the child was last,” Whaley said.

Access to the data is also available on a phone app.

 

Vail Resorts is offering something new with its ski passes this season. It allows skiers and riders to keep track of the runs they’ve used. But the new program is also raising some questions about privacy.

 

“It actually captures skiers’ vertical feet through RF technology on the slopes,” Ryan Whaley with Keystone Resort said.

 

The program is called “Epic Mix.” A chip inside each season pass is activated every time a skier walks through a gate and onto a chairlift. Over the course of a season it records how many days a person skied and much they skied within those days.

 

It’s already recorded an impressive number.

 

“More than anything it allows skiers to create a goal; ‘I want to ski all five mountains this year; I want to ski one day at Keystone, one day at Breck.’ You can just track that sort of thing,” Whaley said.

 

“You just go online and you look it up and you know,” Epic Pass holder Julian Caler said.

 

Tracking an entire ski season is something hardcore mountain-goers have been craving.

 

“I’ve been wanting a GPS to do this for years, but now that Vail has incorporated it … it’s pretty nice,” Epic Pass holder Adam Jones said.

 

The results are only seen by the pass holder. They are posted online and are private. The resort doesn’t have access to where the pass holder has been.

 

Pass holders can opt out of the program entirely, but it could serve a practical function for families that are separated on the mountain.

 

“If a child wanders away on a slope or something like that … you would be able to go onto mix and find out where the child was last,” Whaley said.

 

Access to the data is also available on a phone app.

Comments

One Comment

  1. tom says:

    “The results are only seen by the pass holder. They are posted online and are private. The resort doesn’t have access to where the pass holder has been”.

    So where’s the privacy concern? Headline and article don’t quite match. Nice journalism!

    1. mkdenver1 says:

      I was just going to comment on the same thing, Tom. The only privacy “concern” would be if the pass holder were careless with their information and gave out a password or something.

      If Keystone doesn’t even have access to it, there is no privacy concern.

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