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Customer Privacy: Considerations If Law Enforcement Pays You A Visit

Recently, a dealer was approached by someone who introduced himself as a law enforcement officer and said that he was conducting an investigation and needed some personal information regarding a customer...
Customer Privacy: Considerations If Law Enforcement Pays You A Visit
 
Recently, we received a question regarding customer privacy through our Compliance Consultation Service. The scenario went something like this: a dealer was approached by someone who introduced himself as a law enforcement officer and that he was conducting an investigation and needed some personal information regarding a customer. With a general concern about customer privacy, the dealer reached out to TIADA to ask: Is it okay for dealers to provide a customer's personal information to law enforcement?

In a recent article featured in Texas Dealer magazine, Michael W. Dunagan examines some of the privacy requirements that still apply today. We won't delve into those in this particular blog, but it is important to understand the Privacy Rule and how it applies to different types of dealer sales.

What is also important is to take note of some exceptions to this rule that exist, where sharing personal information is not considered a violation of this rule or does not require that the customer be given an opportunity to opt out. One of these exceptions relates to law enforcement.

In considering the above scenario, the dealer would want to first check that the individual requesting the information is in fact a law enforcement officer. If they are, personal information can be legally provided.

To learn more about the Privacy Rule, who it applies to and other requirements, see Michael W. Dunagan's article, “A Review of Privacy Notice Requirements for Car Creditors.”

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