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(AIA Canada) Your Car. Your Data. Your Choice. campaign aims to raise awareness about vehicle data ownership—a right which vehicle manufacturers believe they’re entitled to.

BY BIANCA MAZZIOTTI

Your Car. Your Data. Your Choice. has gained attention from a Toronto-based insurance consultant.

Brought to Canada in November 2020, the Automotive Industries Association of Canada’s (AIA Canada) Your Car. Your Data. Your Choice. campaign aims to raise awareness about vehicle data ownership—a right which vehicle manufacturers believe they’re entitled to.

According to Tim Zeilman, vice president of global products (cyber) for HSB, which dictates standards in equipment breakdown and specialty coverages, insurers are more likely to side with consumers and repairers on the issue, as OEM data ownership could “impede” the claims process. “It seems like there’s quite a bit of possibility that [data ownership] would impede an investigation,” said Zeilman. “You don’t just have to get the driver’s consent to access the data. You’re going to have to get the consent of some third party that might be significantly more difficult to deal with.”

Zeilman believes that car owners should be able to retrieve their data without having to go through their car manufacturer. He also cites the potential risk that the car manufacturer denies insurers access to the data that could determine who was at fault for an accident, and if the data is withheld, it could interfere with insurance claims.

“These accident investigations are often undertaken by law enforcement, at least in the situation where it’s a serious accident,” he said in an interview. “And frankly, I don’t know today whether law enforcement has arrangements with auto manufacturers who control that data. But that seems like an obvious direction it might go in. It may not be easy for the two of those groups to agree on something.” Ultimately, Zeilman told Canadian Underwriter that, ideally, “logic will prevail, and there will be some sort of understanding over shared data.” AIA Canada estimates that, by 2022, roughly 70 percent to 95 percent of the vehicles on the road will have wireless technology that sends information about the condition of the vehicle to the automaker.

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