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Texas DMV Sells Personal Information To Hundreds Of Companies; Drivers Not Allowed To Opt-Out

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posted on Feb, 22 2013 @ 03:23 PM
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Isn't this just fun?

Much like many other private companies who collect and sell information, the Government seems to able to do the same.

Source


Fun, dubious, privacy-violating stuff happening out in Texas where the Dept. of Motor Vehicles has made a tidy sum selling the information it collects (including names, addresses and makes/models owned) to a variety of private companies.

The Texas DMV claims its "top priority" is protecting drivers' information, but that hardly seems to be the case when it's pulling in $2.1 million a year selling it off. There are protections in place, but they are flimsy at best.


"The Texas Department of Motor Vehicles is the custodian of over 22 million currently registered vehicles in the state of Texas," Randy Elliston, Director of the Texas DMV, explained. "All of those records that are in our database, however, are protected under the Driver Privacy Protection Act."


Randy Elliston says the Driver Privacy Protection Act (DPPA) limits who can buy your information and what they can do with it.

It would be interesting to see what these "limits" are. The spreadsheet obtained by CBS 11 of Dallas, TX shows that 2,448 different entities purchased this information from the DMV last year. The purchasers listed range from towing companies to debt collectors to university parking lot patrols. Elliston states that the purchasing companies are not allowed to use the information for direct contact or advertising purposes.


They claim it's not being used for direct advertising or marketing and sure that may be true. But what stops that company from then selling the material they bought to other companies? Or just sharing with their subsidiaries?

IMO this is something that the government should be prevented from doing, period.

~Tenth




posted on Feb, 22 2013 @ 03:26 PM
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reply to post by tothetenthpower
 


So . . . if they are not using for direct advertising . . . why do they need/want the personal info?

The only legitmate reason, that I can think of, for obtaining this info would be marketing.



posted on Feb, 22 2013 @ 03:33 PM
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Originally posted by solomons path
reply to post by tothetenthpower
 


So . . . if they are not using for direct advertising . . . why do they need/want the personal info?

The only legitmate reason, that I can think of, for obtaining this info would be marketing.





The purchasers listed range from towing companies to debt collectors to university parking lot patrols.


Sounds like they are selling it to companies that are chasing the car owners for money.
Having worked in marketing and dealt with many data collection agencies I dont see how this info could be useful for any sort of marketing. Maybe to sell you brand specific car extras or gear but Id assume the car maker would already have your info.

Its wrong and quite frankly an invasion of privacy but I doubt very much anyone is gonna try and sell you anything based on the info they would get from the DMV
edit on 22/2/2013 by IkNOwSTuff because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 22 2013 @ 03:41 PM
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reply to post by tothetenthpower
 
Well, I just renewed the registration on both my car and on my husband's truck i December and so far I haven't been inundated with solicitations by phone, mail or e-mail. Also just renewed my driver's license in December as well. It seems like if the state of Texas sold my information to anyone whoever they might have sold it to isn't interested in marketing anything to me.



posted on Feb, 22 2013 @ 03:45 PM
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Hey old buddy at Billy Bob towing. Yes, mister car thief. Where can I find a 'make model' of a car? $50 and I'll give you an address where you can 'find' one.



posted on Feb, 22 2013 @ 03:45 PM
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reply to post by tothetenthpower
 


Where I live, anyone can go into the DMV and request a title report and get pretty much all the information on a vehicle. It's public record.

I'm not sure about driving records. I know for some jobs you have to provide your driving record, but maybe only the individual can request that.

ETA: If it's just registration info -- I don't really see the big deal. It's basically a more detailed carfax report, and as I previously said -- is obtainable anyway by the public. Methinks the Texas DMV didn't solicit the sale, but rather these companies came in and bought up/requested the information.
edit on 22-2-2013 by MystikMushroom because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 22 2013 @ 04:33 PM
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They've been doing that for years. In early 1993 I moved back here to Fannin county from Waco, moved into a very small town on a Robin st. . I bought a small truck off a private party and paid cash . After the title came I noticed they misspelled Robin as Robbin, shortly after that I started getting junk mail with that same spelling and mostly car related. This was a very small town with a handful of streets and none of them were named "Robbin", that was all I needed to know what DPS was up to .

I ought to add that all the other (non car related) junk mail had the correct spelling .



posted on Feb, 22 2013 @ 05:42 PM
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reply to post by tothetenthpower
 

I ordered my driving record from the Texas DMV about a month ago. A few days later I got calls on my cell phone from companies who said they noticed I had recently ordered a copy of my driving record.


edit on 22-2-2013 by ErgoTheConclusion because: (no reason given)







 
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