Automakers Are Using Sneaky Tactic to Share Data With Car Insurance Companies

Automakers are tracking customer driving data and sharing it with insurance companies. This has led to higher insurance costs or cancelled policies for some drivers. A recent report highlights this growing concern.

General Motors, Ford, and others collect driving behavior via internet-connected vehicles. They share this data with brokers like LexisNexis and Verisk. These firms create reports that insurers use to evaluate risk.

The reports detail driving habits but not specific locations. They include metrics like hard braking and speeding. Insurers adjust premiums or coverage based on these insights.

Kenn Dahl, a Chevrolet Bolt driver, found his insurance premium jumped 21%. He discovered his driving data had been shared. "It felt like a betrayal," Dahl said. He hadn't realized this data would impact his insurance costs.

Automakers and data brokers claim they obtain consent for data collection. However, many consumers unwittingly agree by not reading the fine print.

A Mozilla report last year criticized automakers' privacy policies. It warned about data sharing with insurers and law enforcement. "Modern cars are surveillance-machines on wheels," the report stated.

Mozilla also noted that sharing data with insurers might soon become nearly mandatory. Yet, some lawmakers are fighting for better privacy protections.

Senator Ed Markey has been vocal in seeking stronger consumer privacy measures. He's urged automakers to enhance privacy policies and requested an FTC investigation into their data practices.

"Automakers have been vacuuming up huge amounts of data," Markey wrote to the FTC. He highlighted the lack of restrictions on data use and the need for transparency.

Consumers can check what data their vehicle collects by using their VIN at They can also request their own reports from LexisNexis and Verisk online to see what information is shared.

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