Starting next year, California dealerships that improperly manage customers' personal information could be in regulatory jeopardy as the state gives consumers more liberty to access or delete the data dealerships collect on them.
Facing the daunting task of tracking every piece of data and where it might go, some dealers and their vendor partners are already racing to prepare for the new law.
The California Consumer Privacy Act, effective Jan. 1, will give consumers in the state the right to take more ownership of their data. Among other requirements, the bill orders businesses to honor consumers' demands to access personal information collected about them; know whether their personal information is sold or disclosed and to whom; and opt out of the sale or sharing of personal information. Consumers can also demand that a business and its affiliates, such as vendors, delete their personal information. The California law could set a precedent that eventually affects dealerships in other states.
The California attorney general will enforce the law but has until July 1, 2020, to interpret it and write a set of rules. Before the interpretation, though, consumers are eligible to sue dealerships that violate the act.