Automotive News Canada - March 2020 - v2 - 20

20

* MARCH 2020

Dealers outlaw
customer dashcam
use during servicing
CONTINUED FROM PA GE 1

service department that wanted to know whether it was
within its legal rights to turn
off a dashcam in a customer's
vehicle.
After consulting with lawyers, Ducharme said, the MDA
sent an advisory in September
to its 350 members.

DASHBOARD DISCONNECT
It states, in part:
"Technically, Section 184 of
the Criminal Code makes it
an offence to record a private
conversation (In other words,
one that you are not part
of) without the parties' consent. However, in order to be
guilty of that offence, the person recording the conversation needs
to intend to
make the
recording of
that specific conversation."
The MDA
urged dealers to add
language
Denis
to their
work orders Ducharme:
Customers are
that states:
in contravention
"This comof the law if
pany also
they use a
reserves
camera in a
the right to vehicle and
disconnect
don't advise the
any dash
technician.
camera or
FILE PHOTO
recording
device located on or inside the
vehicle prior to service."
Ducharme said he knows of
at least one incident in which
a technician in Alberta disconnected a dashcam while doing
diagnostic work, and the customer complained.
Aftermarket dashcams
plug into a car's power outlet
and attach to the dashboard
or windshield. They retail for
between $100 and $400, depending on the features, and often
come with full app support,
allowing the user to control the
camera from a smartphone.
No agency tracks how
many dashcams are sold in
Canada, however, Californiabased analysis firm Grand
View Research estimated that
6.5 million were sold in North
America in 2017, and it expects
the global dashcam market to
hit US $1.8 billion by 2022.
The MDA's advisory has
received strong support from
the Calgary Motor Dealers
Association.
"We absolutely do not have
to work on a car that comes
in with a dashcam on," said
Jim Gillespie, the association's

THE LAW
Section 184 of the
Criminal Code, states,
in part:

Rick Lumsden, service
manager at Glenmore Audi
in Calgary, with the section
of the customer agreement
that forbids video recording
on the premises.

PHOTO: DOUG FIRBY

* Every person who, by
means of any electro-magnetic, acoustic, mechanical or other
device, knowingly intercepts a private communication is guilty of:
(a) an indictable offence
and liable to imprisonment for a term of not
more than five years; or
(b) an offence punishable
on summary conviction.

director.
"Technicians have a right to
their privacy."
At Glenmore Audi in
Calgary, Service Manager Rick
Lumsden implemented a video-recording-device policy on
the advice of the dealership's
invoice supplier.
"We've never had an incident; very few cars we service
have dashcams," he said, adding the policy was added to
invoices about three years ago.

PRIVACY CONCERNS
In February 2019, the CBC
reported that a customer of
Parkview BMW in Toronto
complained that a technician
turned off his vehicle's inwardand outward-pointing video
cameras.
When the customer took his
car in for service again, the
technician turned off the cameras a second time
and deleted
the videos
on the file,
the CBC
said.
"This
is raising
a concern
with privaJim Gillespie:
cy because
"We absolutely
I have my
do not have to
family in
work on a car
my car and
that comes in
with a dashcam we have
on. Technicians conversations,"
have a right to
Haider
their privacy."
Firas, the
FILE PHOTO
customer,
told the CBC.
"[The employee] actually
had to go through footage to
find their own footage to delete,
and this is a 100 per cent no-no,
like you can't access people's
private information to get rid
of your own footage."

Senior executives with
Parkview BMW declined to
speak with Automotive News
Canada about the incident.
the details as reported by the
CBC, but was concerned that
the technician reportedly
browsed the customer's video
files and deleted some.
By browsing the video files,
it is possible the technician
would be found to have invaded the customer's privacy or
even to have acted in a "willful
and intentional destruction of
property."

'SURVEILLANCE SOCIETY'
But McPhail, Torontobased director of the Privacy,
Technology and Surveillance
Project for the Canadian Civil
Liberties Association (CCLA),
said the move by the MDA is
justified.
"Dealerships would not let
customers stand in a shop and
watch as someone works on
their car. Why would we allow
it virtually?
"We have to ask whether this reflects our Canadian
values. In many ways, we are
sleepwalking into a surveillance society."
Some dealership groups
have been advised to post signs
in their service areas and add
language to their work orders
that dashcams will be switched
off during service work.
"It's no different than walking into a dealership with a
camera," Gillespie said. "In no
other industry do you have a
camera watching you."

PRIVACY PRIORITY
Jennifer Davidson, a lawyer who specializes in technology and intellectual-property law at Deeth Williams
Wall in Toronto, said commercial enterprises are governed
by the Personal Information
Protection and Electronic
Documents Act (PIPEDA). The
federal privacy law sets out the
ground rules for how businesses must handle personal information in the course of their
commercial activity. Some
provinces also have additional
privacy legislation.
In the commercial context,
a dealership has the right to
determine whether a recording can take place on its prop-

SOME DEALERS INDIFFERENT

Lawyer Jennifer Davidson
says a technician could get
into trouble for refusing to
service a vehicle that has a
live dashcam and might just
turn off or unplug the device.
P H O T O V I A J E N N I F E R D AV I D S O N

erty, and the technician has the
right to consent to or refuse a
dashcam recording, Williams
said. The onus is on the customers to inform the dealership
at the time of booking that they
want to record the work and
give the dealership a chance to
consent or object to the practice.
Acting on his own, a technician could get into "hot water"
for refusing to service a vehicle with a live dashcam, so the
easier solution is to simply
turn off or unplug the device,
Davidson said.
Beyond the right to privacy, she noted that a technician could be using a proprietary tool during service work.
If that is captured on a dashcam, then the maker of the tool
could lose its trade secret.
In the Parkview BMW case,
Davidson said she only knew

Dealers interviewed by
Automotive News Canada had
a variety of ways to deal with
the issue.
Scott Forrest, service manager at Jack Carter ChevroletBuick-GMC in Calgary, said
his dealership is concerned
about the technician's privacy
and the nearby conversations
that might be recorded.
"If we see [dashcams], we'll
just unplug them. However,
"some [technicians] don't even
care."
At Audi Midtown Toronto,
Service Manager Angelo
Christopoulos said the dealership has no problem with the
recordings.
"We conduct ourselves with
pride and are happy to let customers watch the work via
dashcam.
"At the end of the day, we
don't touch them. It's really not
our place."
In May 2019, Canadian Tire
told Global News that a service
technician in the Toronto area
had been fired after a video
showed what appeared to be
an employee speeding in a customer's BMW.
But McPhail of the CCLA
said such incidents don't justify unrestricted surveillance.
- ANC



Automotive News Canada - March 2020 - v2

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Automotive News Canada - March 2020 - v2

Automotive News Canada - March 2020 - v2 - Intro
Automotive News Canada - March 2020 - v2 - 1
Automotive News Canada - March 2020 - v2 - 2
Automotive News Canada - March 2020 - v2 - 3
Automotive News Canada - March 2020 - v2 - 4
Automotive News Canada - March 2020 - v2 - 5
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Automotive News Canada - March 2020 - v2 - 28
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