Fleet and leasing firms urged to prepare for new EU data protection rules

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Automotive finance, leasing, fleet and mobility companies are being warned to take action now to prepare for the forthcoming EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

Gémar Hompes, Sofico managing director

Gémar Hompes, Sofico managing director

The new GDPR, which takes effect from May next year, aims to assure that a number of principles are upheld regarding the lawful processing of personal data and will impact on almost every organisation based in the EU, as well as every organisation that does business in the EU even if based abroad.

Global software provider, Sofico, which is working with automotive finance, leasing, fleet and mobility companies to prepare for the new rules, also warns that non-compliance poses a great operational risk for many businesses, as infringements are punishable by fines of up to €20m or 4% of the company’s total worldwide annual turnover, whichever is higher.

Sofico is reviewing the impact of the new requirements with fleet clients with a view to enhancing its mainstream Miles software platform where required and ensuring that all Sofico customers are compliant by the time the new rules become law.

Gémar Hompes, managing director of Sofico, said: “Bearing in mind the length of software release cycles from providers like ourselves, plus the update schedule of many internal IT departments, there’s not actually a lot of time for leasing companies and captive finance providers to assure compliance before the deadline of next May.

“While some of the actions that need to be taken are strictly the responsibility of leasing companies, software suppliers will also need to make changes to any software used to gather or process personal data, to enable their customers to comply with the new regulations.”

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Natalie Middleton

Natalie has worked as a fleet journalist for 14 years, previously as assistant editor on the former Company Car magazine before joining Fleet World in 2006. Prior to this, she worked on a range of B2B titles, including Insurance Age and Insurance Day. Natalie works across the magazine portfolio and updates the company websites with daily news, interviews and road test content.