Renting a car is a fun time and some of us even like to go all out when we do it and get all the bells and whistles we could or can’t afford in our actual cars. There’s a certain ‘playing pretend’ fun about renting cars, for sure.
And there’s no doubt that many of today’s bells and whistles are really, really cool. Web browsing, streaming music, hands free calls and texts – all of it can really add to your experience. While it’s all fun – there is a danger in it though – and that’s privacy.
Staying connected is important in today’s world, but there are certainly some things to keep in mind if you’re renting a full-connected car. Cyber security and data protection is a big issue in today’s world and it’s certainly (inevitably) leaked its way into the automotive industry as well. And that’s what we’re here to help with today.
Here are some things you can do to keep your data and information more secure when you rent a car.
Don’t connect your devices to the infotainment system for charging – We know – that’s kind of asking a lot – but it’s safer to use a cigarette lighter adapter. Why? Because more often than not, USB connections transfer data automatically without asking your permission. And that’s data you may or may not want in the hands of others.
Be sure to check all your permissions – In a smooth transition from point #1, be sure to check all the permission functions on your phone – or the section in your settings that says what your device can and can’t share. Grant access to only the things you think are necessary. So if you want to just play music – make sure that music is the only thing your car can access.
Delete all your data before returning the car – We actually see this a lot where a client returns a car to us and doesn’t reset the infotainment system. While WE do that here, not everyone does it or even trains their employees to do it. So what happens is that your data is just there, hanging out there for anyone to take. And truth be told – you don’t know who will be renting that car next. Clear our your information so it doesn’t get stolen.
So why is all this information management important? Aside from the general embarrassment that can come from it – valuable information can be retained in a car – such as your home address, where you work, bank, etc. Your phone number, other people’s contacts and even text messages can all be logged as well. Keeping this information out of the hands of people is important.
So the next time you rent a connected car – have fun! But take the necessary precautions to protect you and your information from harm.