Bulk Sales of Driver Data Could End in Minnesota

March 14, 2014

Minnesota lawmakers are inserting themselves in a dispute between businesses and the state’s public safety agency over costs and ease of access to millions of driver’s records and vehicle registrations.

Legislation reversing an administrative decision to end bulk sales of the data began working through the Legislature Wednesday. Department of Public Safety officials say they’re responding to citizen concern over privacy. A coalition of groups ranging from auto insurers to car dealers to data aggregators contends it will raise consumer prices and slow safety recalls.

The House Civil Law Committee deferred a vote until Friday. The bill would overrule the department’s move to require records be accessed individually at $5 apiece beginning in May. Users say the bulk availability means they spend less than a dollar for each lookup now.

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