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Keeping in-vehicle personal data safe

Written by | Posted on 16.05.2018
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leaseplan driver looking at sat nav

As technology continues to progress, more and more personal data will be stored within a vehicle – and people need to take steps to protect themselves.

It knows where you go

A satnav is a lot easier than reading a map. You get from A to B as quickly as possible – and you can even save favourite destinations to make things more straightforward.

However, this means your car has data about where you live, where you work, where your children go to school and where you spend your weekends.

It knows who you know

Mobile phone systems built-in to cars are a great idea, as they can make drivers a lot safer on the roads.

But, your car may keep a record of information it receives while your phone is paired to it by Bluetooth, such as your most-recent contacts, favourites and text messages.

And most people just don’t realise

Last, year, the International Automotive Remarketers Alliance (IARA) carried out a study of car auctions in the US and Canada.

It found that more than half of the 400 vehicles it looked at – covering 12 manufacturers and 32 makes – had personal information in them.

Keeping yourself safe

As the automotive and technology industries get closer and closer together, more and more personal data is likely to be involved – and there will be a greater need to protect it.

It’s likely that privacy-by-design will be built into vehicles at some point in the future, but until that time, it’s everybody’s responsibility to make sure their vehicle data is as safe as it can be.

Here are a couple of steps you can take to keep your data safe.

  • If you are using a hire or rental car, give yourself time to delete and unpair any Bluetooth devices before returning the vehicle
  • If you are returning a lease car, make sure you restore the navigation system to its factory settings and unpair Bluetooth on the phone. You can find out how to do all this in the vehicle manual

Find out more 

If you would like to find out more about the power of data and insight for fleets a good place to start is our latest research into the challenges facing fleets here.

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