RENT A CAR Fines Raise Right To Privacy Concerns

Tuesday, August 21st 2001, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

Consumers beware, the next time you rent a car, pushing the speed limit could cost you hundreds of dollars in fines.

Acme Rent-A-Car in Connecticut fined a customer $150 for speeding three different times in the car he rented.

The company used a global-positioning system it has in its cars to clock his speed. All the major rental car companies equip their vehicles with GPS. They say they use it to track stolen or lost vehicles, not their customers' speed.

Still, the story is raising questions about a customer's right to privacy. Max Brunswick, Acme Rent-a-Car attorney, said, "We have the right to put whatever devices we want to in the cars as long as they're not illegal."

James Fleming, CT Comm of Consumer Protection, responded, "They didn't notify them adequately what a GPS system was. Second point, even if they had adequately notified them, that this was going to happen, the fine itself is illegal under connecticut law."

The case goes before a Connecticut court later this month.