Auto dealership addresses customer’s concerns over safeguarding of his personal information
Early resolved case summary #6
- Personal information shall not be used or disclosed for purposes other than those for which it was collected, except with the consent of the individual or as required by law.
- Personal information shall be protected by security safeguards appropriate to the sensitivity of the information.
- The security safeguards shall protect personal information against loss or theft, as well as unauthorized access, disclosure, copying, use or modification.
In addition, the individual alleged that he was receiving unsolicited emails, as well as sales phone calls and letter mail, from the dealership itself each time his vehicle had been at the dealership for service and he had completed a customer survey.
The dealership’s general manager apologized for the continued correspondence and phone calls, stating that they were only intended to maintain communication with customers. The individual’s contact information was then removed from the dealership’s database.
The general manager informed that the sales representative may have taken the individual’s personal email address from a copy of the sales agreement. The dealership’s lawyer then contacted the former salesperson, who claimed he had used contact information from his personal notes to contact the individual, not information taken from the sales agreement. The former employee was then asked to return any dealership property and to refrain from contacting the individual.
As the general manager eventually stopped communicating with him to keep him updated about the dealership’s efforts to address his concerns, the individual contacted our Office to file a complaint.
Our Office contacted the former salesperson and he admitted taking only the individual’s email address from his former employer. He said he had no intention to stop this practice, as it was a common one in the industry and he had been doing it for 30 years.
The former salesperson denied having any of the individual’s financial information. The dealership’s new general manager also confirmed to us that a customer’s financial information, in the form of a cheque, was only seen by the finance manager and general manager, and that the information was locked in a cabinet accessible only to those two managers.
The individual was then satisfied that the former salesperson did not possess any more of his personal information, and he closed his complaint.
As no further action was necessary, the file was deemed early resolved.
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