Report: State Sells Driver Information to Private Companies

Motorists, privacy experts raise concerns.

Pennsylvania made $41 million in June from the sale of driver’s license information to private third parties, TribLive reports.

“The records include gender, license class, expiration date and up to 10 years of traffic violations, all of which is available to insurance companies, credit businesses and employers at a price of $9 per driver,” reports Melissa Daniels.

The state has 8.9 million drivers, and the practice raises concerns among privacy experts. “In general, people don’t like it when companies, or in this case, government agencies, sell their data,” said Lorrie Cranor, a professor at Carnegie Mellon University who runs its privacy engineering program. “It’s, ‘Why should you be able to make money off of my data?’ ”

But TribLive notes the buyers aren’t allowed to share the information with other third parties, and adds: “The agency requires applicants to supply names, addresses and license numbers for drivers whose records they are requesting. They must declare they will use the information for one of several lawful purposes and sign an affidavit under penalty of two years in prison or a $5,000 fine.