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ACA Warns California Legislature of Telematics Threat

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March 16, 2016—The Auto Care Association announced Tuesday that Aaron Lowe, senior vice president, regulatory and government affairs, testified before the California Senate Judiciary Committee to warn legislators about the impact of vehicle telematics on the auto care industry. 

“While the advent of telematics on late-model vehicles has the potential to provide significant benefits to consumers regarding how their vehicle is serviced, it also has the potential to unnecessarily distort the market, providing extensive control to the vehicle manufacturer on where and how car owners obtain repairs, ultimately disrupting the current competitive landscape for vehicle repair to the detriment of small business and consumers,” said Lowe. “Specifically, armed with the extensive data about a customer’s vehicle combined with the means to communicate directly with the driver in real time, the vehicle manufacturer has the ability to steer the motorists to the dealership or to a service establishment that may be a strong purchaser of their parts and information. This situation represents a major change in the repair marketplace.” 

Lowe asked manufacturers to provide more transparency and control to consumers regarding the data being sent by the car, and urged car companies to work with third parties to develop a system that permits data from embedded systems to be shared with responsible entities with the consent of the owner. 

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