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Ministers will look at how DVLA sells on details of drivers to parking companies
Updated 4:20pm Saturday 8th February 2014 in News
TOP Government ministers will look at how drivers’ private details are sold on to enforcement companies, after two Hampshire women’s victory in a court battle.
Christine Lemon and Sue Harris successfully overturned a £100 fine they had been handed by ParkingEye after parking at The Range in Southampton.
As previously reported, they believe the firm did not actually have a contract to run the site when they were fined.
And they have criticised the Driver and Vehicle and Licensing Agency (DVLA), which sold their information to ParkingEye before their fines were posted to them, saying it should not have released the information if the company did not have a valid contract.
Sue, 54, from Poppy Close in Locks Heath, added: "I'd like to see action taken at Government level to stop the DVLA selling motorists' personal details (at £2.50 a time) to private parking companies.
“Car owners cannot avoid filling in application forms for road tax and are given no option about their personal data being sold.”
Now Christine’s MP, Julian Lewis, has taken the matter up with transport ministers in Whitehall, saying he believes the whole practice of selling information on to companies needs to be looked at.
The DVLA sold the details of 1.8million drivers to parking firms in 2012/13 alone – with ParkingEye the biggest customer, buying the details of 684,000 motorists and spending more than £2million in the process.
Conservative MP for New Forest East Mr Lewis has asked Secretary of State for Transport Patrick McLoughlin and his junior minister Stephen Hammond to scrap the practice of selling data.
He also wants to know what checks the DVLA carry out on firms before selling data.
He said: “Should a Government agency be supplying information such as names and addresses to a firm which may or may not be seeking to bring action before a court?
“Personally I don’t think it should.”
A spokesman for the DVLA said the organisation “took its responsibility to protect information seriously”.
He added: “That is why information is only provided under strict controls to parking firms who meet the standards set by an appropriate accredited trade association and are compliant with its code of practice.”
The DVLA is currently investigating ParkingEye’s contract at The Range.
ParkingEye has insisted to the Daily Echo that it does hold a contract for the site, but has refused to produce proof.
The Range declined to comment.
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