The new General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)

What the GDPR means for car dealers

After a two-year transitional phase, the new General Data Protection Regulation will finally apply from 25 May 2018. The regulation entails major changes for all companies that work with personal data in any form. And in the digital age, these are almost all of them. Accordingly, the General Data Protection Regulation is also relevant for car dealers - because a violation of it can be expensive. At the same time, however, the regulation also opens up new possibilities.

It has taken exactly two years since the new European Union regulation on the processing of personal data came into force: the transitional period ends on 25 May this year, and the GDPR is being applied across all EU nations. Companies operating in Europe had two years of time to prepare for the new regulation, which replaces the more than 20-year-old data protection directive 95/46/EC. The importance of strict compliance with the GDPR is demonstrated by the sanctions: disregarding the regulation will lead to a penalty fee of € 20 million or up to four percent of the worldwide annual turnover of the company in question.

In times of digital change, it was long overdue to adapt legislation to technological developments. Accordingly, the rights of individuals to their own data are central to the new regulation. In the future, citizens have a right to information, rectification, erasure, and restriction of processing of their own data. And giving private individuals more rights means great effort behind the scenes, but also new benefits.

Many companies have had to completely rework their privacy organization to comply with the new standards. For example, it must be ensured that all data is kept safe, accessible at all times and comprehensively protected against cybercrime. Often, this means standardising the company's internal data organisation and scrutinising the legal foundations, requirements, and technologies used.

Chances of the new regulation

It is exactly this unification process that can also be seen as a great opportunity. Many companies have had to react to market developments over the past 20 years and adapt their data management. However, an inconsistent organisation causes unnecessary costs year after year. The changes required by the GDPR are therefore also an opportunity to professionalise your own data organisation and thus increase the quality of the data. This not only simplifies internal processes, but also opens up new possibilities, for example in the analysis of important statistics or in marketing.

At the same time professional data management is a signal from dealers to their customers that they take data protection seriously and recognize the supervision of the customer over their data. Anyone who offers their customers a simple, transparent way to exercise the rights listed above shows that they understand the specific needs and importance of data protection in the digital age. As a result, customers know their data is in trusted hands and feel safe. Ultimately, this leads to customers who are not only happier but also willing to trust the dealer with more data – data that the dealer can use to optimise the customer experience.

Therefore, dealers should not let the remaining time pass unused. Anyone who realises the importance of data protection and data protection in good time and knows how to use this to his benefit can secure great competitive advantages in the future.

As an insurance company, CarGarantie is particularly committed to protecting the privacy of its customers and contractors. It will ensure that the data is well protected even under the new regulation. We will communicate in good time which changes this will entail for our contract partners in the future.