DVLA FACES WATCHDOG INQUIRY INTO SHARING DRIVER DETAILS
The DVLA faces a watchdog inquiry regarding potential breaches of GDPR Data Protection regulations for sharing personal details of 23 million motorists in 2018.
This has been widely reported, although this has been under the spotlight for quite some time amid concerns among motorists how the DVLA have been able to do this without motorist’s consent.
The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) is set to shine a spotlight on this. This is because various motoring organisations have questioned how the DVLA has been able to legitimately share personal details on such a vast scale without any scrutiny.
The DVLA made almost £20 million in 2018 from sharing vehicle keeper details with various firms and bodies that are largely unregulated. These include bailiffs, private investigators and private parking firms. Local councils account for half of all requests.
There are about 32 million motorists in the UK and 20 million motorists have had their personal details disclosed without their knowledge and consent.
CAN PRIVATE COMPANIES GET YOUR DETAILS FROM THE DVLA?
Private car parking firms that give out parking tickets can only request information from DVLA if they are members of the British Parking Association (BPA) or the International Parking Community (IPC).
ARE VEHICLE REGISTRATION NUMBERS PERSONAL DATA?
Yes. A car registration plate is personal data if the car is owned by an individual or sole trader because it can be used to identify an individual. The General Data Protection Regulation Act / Data Protection Act 2018 defines personal data as: “any information relating to an identified or identifiable living individual”.
It is astonishing that the DVLA can disclose vehicle keeper details to anyone for a raft of spurious reasons without question or scrutiny. Organisations are paranoid about GDPR regulations and breaches, yet this has been given a green light.
COVID AND THE COLLAPSE IN CAR TRAVEL
Private parking firms issued over 12,000 tickets during the last financial year 2020/21, despite a collapse in car travel due to the coronavirus pandemic. The tickets were issued for alleged violations on private land such as supermarkets or shopping centre car parks. Each penalty is up to £100 resulting in a potential £438 million payday for car park operators.
Scottish Councils are raking in millions from parking and this is a racket that urgently needs addressing.
It is clear to me that this is simply a money-making exercise and automated theft that motorists find nigh on impossible to remedy.
THE ROAD TRAFFIC ACT
Compliance with the law and the Road Traffic Act cuts both ways, and those enforcing the law need to be held to account and made to comply with it themselves. The law needs to be fair and balanced instead of being tilted against motorists.
I shine a spotlight on various technicalities on parking tickets and pothole claims in my new book to enable you to fight back. The tide is turning, and as a result motorists are starting to push back and challenge everything now.
What are your thoughts on this? Do you think the DVLA needs to be more stringent with your data?