In the US departments of vehicles to sell driver’s license data, earning tens of millions of dollars

The departments vehicles (DMVs) across the country sell driver’s license data to private investigators or other third parties.

Motherboard the investigation revealed hundreds of documents that point to a widespread scheme DMV, bringing tens of millions of dollars a year for the sale of drivers. The data sold included names, addresses, dates of birth, phone numbers, email addresses, vehicles, and other personal information.

In addition to the insurance and towing companies, it was discovered that the DMV was selling the data to private investigators to aid in the surveillance of spouses.

«You need to know what they were doing when they did it, with whom they did it and how long it lasted. You need to see the evidence with my own eyes,» — said on the website Integrity Investigations, a private company that buys data from the DMV.

Only in Virginia 109 various private companies involved in the surveillance, acquired data DMV with hundreds of employers, law firms, companies providing credit reports and banks such as Wells Fargo and JPMorgan Chase. Documents obtained by Motherboard show a similar practice in new Jersey, Delaware and Wisconsin, and the local media revealed the scheme of sale DMV in Florida, Texas and South Carolina.

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Several DMV told Motherboard that they don’t sell the pictures to the driver the rights of citizens or social security numbers.

Selling these data to licensed private investigators is perfectly legal, thanks to the Law on the protection of the privacy of the driver (DPPA), the law, written back in the 90-ies.

«Congress should carefully study the Law on the protection of the privacy of the driver and, if necessary, to close the loopholes which are being abused to spy on Americans,» said Senator Ron Weiden, who also called for the cessation of collection of personal information.

Selling data has become a huge source of income in some States. South Carolina earned $ 42 million by selling information about the drivers in 2015. Other States received the same income: Wisconsin — $ 17 million in 2018, and Florida’s $ 77 million in 2017.