Thanks to Xeni for pointing to a recent blog post by Lorna Herf about trying to buy a car from South Bay BMW only to end up walking out when the dealership demanded a fingerprint and wouldn’t budge:
Imagine you’ve gone through a multiple week process to purchase an automobile.
You know the drill. Research every feature, pick your color, then, it’s negotiations for purchase price and for trade-in. Everything is done and agreed-apon, and excited, you are ready to hand over the check and collect your new car.
You are handed a slip of paper and told to mark your right thumbprint in a box. The paper says clearly that it’s a request, for your protection, and to prevent your identity theft.
When you politely decline, the dealership refuses to sell you the car.
Well researched and worth the read. Another disturbing tidbit that’s buried about midway through is that South Bay BMW also refused to return or destroy any of the personal data (including copies of her driver’s license and marriage certificate as well as a credit report run without her knowledge) that they had already collected. Instead they’re keeping it on file for seven years just as they would’ve done with the print. Mind you, this is somebody who didn’t buy a car from them.