Start now to think about how your business might be breaching the GDPR

If your business has been following the ICO’s 12 point GDPR plan as detailed in previous issues of the eBulletin, you will already know you need to think about the personal data you hold within the business and how it is kept secure.

Breaches by individuals can attract not just fines but criminal convictions as was seen recently when a recruitment manager who sent out 26 CVs to an external recruitment agency without consent from the data subjects was prosecuted at Birmingham magistrates court under Section 55 of the Data Protection Act. He pleaded guilty and picked up a £994 fine (including costs and a victim surcharge).

If your business wants to avoid such prosecution, you do need to make sure that there are systems in place and that members of staff have a good understanding of how to treat personal data.

Simple and practical actions could include moving filing cabinets of customer invoices to a locked room so that unauthorised people cannot wander in and gain access to files, requiring staff to sign regular memos reminding them not to leave their work ipad unattended and making sure any third party information processors are fully aware of the GDPR.

Your company should start to liaise with any third parties who hold or process your company data since, if you give them personal data, the onus is on your company to ensure the data secure is kept secure and only used for purposes for which consent has been freely given. Some third party organisations are already taking action, for example working towards the ISO27001 qualification, part of the ISO27000 family setting out international standards for keeping information assets secure.

Further articles on GDPR will appear in future issues of the eBulletin.

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Comline officially launches ‘My Comline’

Comline Auto Parts (Comline) has officially launched its ‘My Comline’ marketing portal, which is exclusively available to Comline Factor partners across Europe. My Comline features an array of marketing options including customisable promotions, branded clothing and merchandise, promotional literature, banners, signage and display items.

The award-winning British distributor of all-makes replacement parts has partnered with UK-based promotional goods company, Involution, to develop My Comline with the aim of providing its customers with a simple and efficient way to view, customise and order brand marketing and promotional materials.

A key benefit to the My Comline portal is the ability for Comline customers to access exactly what they need for their business. There are well over 100 merchandise and clothing items to choose from, many of which are available in a variety of colours and are customisable to the specific needs of the customer. Marketing & Communications Manager, Leigh Davies, explains further:

“My Comline will become central to the marketing support offered to Comline partners, and we’re delighted with the platform that Involution has provided. Gone are they days where we take an educated guess as to what our customers want and take a bulk order into stock.

“With My Comline, the majority of items are made-to-order for the customer, ensuring the customer gets something they actually want and that they have access to broader selection of materials with which to develop their Comline business.”

One of the central features of My Comline is a set menu of 12 customisable promotions covering a variety of Comline product categories. These promotions are designed to help Comline Factor customers incentivise purchases and generate incremental sales for their business.

Using the portal’s in-built web-to-print facility, customers can choose from any one of the 12 promotions and quickly customise with their own logo, company name, contact details and their preferred promotional terms. Customisation complete, the customer simply places their order then waits for the promotional leaflets and merchandise to arrive – it couldn’t be easier!

From backpacks to banners
Inside My Comline customers will discover an eclectic mix of clothing, merchandise and literature, as well as branding items, such as banners, posters and signage. Leigh comments:

“Over the past 12 months, the Comline marketing team have been working hard to develop a toolbox of marketing items which customers can tap into. My Comline offers our customers fantastic array of branded merchandise which can be used as promotional incentives, workwear and as brand promotion tools. From backpacks and baseball caps to overalls and air fresheners, plus a raft of banners, signage and display items, My Comline has choice aplenty.”

One of the Comline jackets

With winter all but here, My Comline is already geared up with a wide selection of items designed to keep customers toasty and warm. Beanie hats, sweatshirts, body warmers, a selection of jacket options and a new ‘First for Filters’ mug are all available to Comline partners throughout the winter months.

Vehicle branding
Another option showcased via My Comline is vehicle branding with visitors to the portal being able to see a few examples of Comline liveries currently in use across Europe. According to Leigh, branded vehicles can make a huge impact:

“Branded vehicles are, quite literally, mobile billboards. Having our name emblazoned alongside our customer on their delivery vans is a fantastic way of generating brand awareness and a very public way for our customer to endorse the Comline brand. We’ve seen the positive impact of such vehicle graphics all across Europe and believe it’s a fantastic way to underline the partnership we have with a customer.”

A guest version of My Comline is available to browse at but the materials listed within this portal are exclusively available to Comline Factor partners only.

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Tesla unveils electric Semi truck with 500-mile range

Tesla has unveiled its electric Semi truck which has a range of 500 miles with a full 36.3-tonne load.

It does 0-60 mph in 20 seconds with a full load, a task that takes a diesel truck about a minute. Without a trailer, the Tesla Semi achieves 0-60 mph in five seconds, compared to 15 seconds in a comparable diesel truck.

Most notably for truck drivers and other road users, it climbs 5% grades at a steady 65mph, whereas a diesel truck maxes out at 45mph on a 5% grade.

The Tesla Semi requires no shifting or clutching for smooth acceleration and deceleration, and its regenerative braking recovers 98% of kinetic energy to the battery, giving it a basically infinite brake life.

The cabin features a centered driver position for optimal visibility. Two touchscreen displays positioned symmetrically on both sides of the driver provide easy access to navigation, blind spot monitoring and electronic data logging.

Built-in connectivity integrates directly with a fleet’s management system to support routing and scheduling, and remote monitoring.

Megachargers, a new high-speed DC charging solution, will add about 400 miles in 30 minutes and can be installed at origin or destination points and along heavily trafficked routes, enabling recharging during loading, unloading, and driver breaks.

The Tesla Semi’s all-electric architecture is designed to have a higher safety standard than any other heavy-duty truck on the market, with a reinforced battery that shields the Semi from impact and gives it an exceptionally low center of gravity.

Surround cameras aid object detection and minimise blind spots, automatically alerting the driver to safety hazards and obstacles.

With Enhanced Autopilot, the Tesla Semi features Automatic Emergency Braking, Automatic Lane Keeping, Lane Departure Warning, and event recording.

Tesla Semi can also travel in a convoy, where one or several Semi trucks will be able to autonomously follow a lead Semi.

Production is expected to begin in 2019.

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Driverless cars will be on UK roads by 2021, says Chancellor

Driverless cars could be on UK roads within four years under Government plans to invest in the sector.

In his budget on Wednesday, Chancellor Philip Hammond annouced that driverless cars will be able to be tested without any human operator inside or outside the car, and without the legal constraints and rules that apply in many other EU nations, and much of the US.

He told the BBC: “Some would say that’s a bold move, but we have to embrace these technologies if we want the UK to lead the next industrial revolution.”

Asked about the potential loss of jobs for drivers, he said the country could not “hide from change” and the Government had to equip people with the skills “to take up new careers”.

Mike Hawes, chief executive of the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders, said it was good news that the Government was taking a lead by making the UK attractive to those seeking to develop, test and build an entirely new generation of cars.

He said: “We support Government’s measures to make the UK one of the best places in the world to develop, test and sell connected and autonomous vehicles.

“These vehicles will transform our roads and society, dramatically reducing accidents and saving thousands of lives every year, while adding billions of pounds to the economy.

“We look forward to continuing industry’s collaboration with government to ensure the UK can be among the first to grasp the benefits of this exciting new technology.”


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Scania to build new UK HQ

Scania GB Limited has confirmed development and construction of a new UK headquarters and support centre in Milton Keynes.

The development, designed and built by UK construction firm Kier, will be based on the existing site where Scania has been present for 36 years, and the current office facilities and car park will be joined by a new 54,754sq ft three-storey HQ with a 4,718sq ft facilities building. Work is expected to be completed by the summer of 2018, and when finished the outgoing facilities building will be demolished to leave a modern and welcoming work environment. The building will be mostly open-plan, with steel and composite metal construction and a three-storey open atrium.

Scania currently employs more than 230 people in Milton Keynes and the ongoing relationship with the city as one of its major employers is one of the key reasons for the firm retaining its existing location.

Claes Jacobsson, managing director for Scania GB Limited commented, “As one of the UK’s leading commercial vehicle suppliers and one the longest established companies in Milton Keynes, this development reconfirms our commitment to both our industry and the area in which we are based. The premises are being constructed to an extremely high environmental standard, and as such will serve us for many years into the future as we continue to support our customers with an ever-growing and developing range of innovative and sustainable transport solutions.”

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IAAF promises lively post-Brexit flavour to Conference

The IAAF will adopt a post-Brexit theme at its Annual Conference next month, with a host of influential key speakers from across the automotive industry taking centre stage to discuss important issues involving ‘tomorrow’s’ aftermarket and future technology.

The Conference – sponsored by Autoparts UK – will be held on 7 December at DoubleTree by Hilton, Milton Keynes and aims to examine current issues from both the UK and Europe, highlighting the many changes that are taking place across the industry from a technical, legislative, market and Brexit perspective.

Wendy Williamson speaking at the 2016 Conference in Birmingham

The theme – ‘Facing a post Brexit world in the automotive aftermarket’ aims to address all these issues and produce a lively debate for conference guests.

The Conference will be facilitated by Johnny Herbert, widely recognised as one of the greatest all-round racing drivers in the history of motorsport.

An array of speakers will be invited to engage the audience of around 100 attendees, most of whom will include parts suppliers, distributors, garages, as well as representatives from the industry and aftermarket trade press.

Dr Julia Saini, Vice President Consulting of Frost & Sullivan will be addressing the Conference on the importance of the UK aftermarket to the UK economy and Brexit’s impact on the sector, followed by Quentin Le-Hetet, General Manager of GIPA discussing how global influences are impacting on the distribution structure of the UK aftermarket. Alistair Preston, Co-Founder of Whocanfixmycar will be tackling the rise of online service providers & the impact on the UK aftermarket and Caroline Lake, Founder of Caroline’s Cars will be talking about life running a garage in 2017 and the main challenges for the future.

As the Conference heads into the afternoon session, technology will be very much the focus as Olaf Henning, Corporate Executive Vice President of MAHLE Aftermarket speaks on how F1 technology is being used to drive developments in the automotive parts aftermarket. The audience will also get to hear about future technologies and their impact on the aftermarket from Steve Nash, Chief Executive of IMI and Neil Pattemore, Technical Director of Figiefa will follow, sharing his view on the latest technical threats emerging from the UK and Europe, before the Conference draws to a close with President of the IAAF, Lawrence Bleasdale.

Wendy Williamson, IAAF chief executive said: “This year’s Conference is anticipated to be a lively one and we hope shall provide some valuable, fresh insight to our members, as we cap off a roller-coaster year for the industry and UK economy in general. We have a fantastic mix of talks lined up from some excellent speakers, and no doubt Johnny’s presence will only heighten the sense of anticipation. The audience can expect a thoroughly engaging and enjoyable day.”

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TecAlliance RMI data now available on the Caruso digital data marketplace

TecAlliance GmbH, alongside telematics service providers such as Bosch, Continental and ZF, and car manufacturers including BMW, is one of the first companies to make its data available on Caruso. Caruso, the open, neutral and secure data marketplace for the automotive aftermarket, officially went live on 16 November and allows data users to connect data from different providers to optimise their business models or develop new ones. As a first step, TecAlliance is now offering its repair and maintenance information (RMI) via Caruso. In the future, it will also be possible to acquire individual data points via the Caruso marketplace using TecAlliance vehicle IDs, making the information easy to access, even for smaller businesses.

As a forerunner in providing its RMI data (which includes information from technical manuals and leaflets, adjustment data, circuit diagrams and diagnostic information, for example), TecAlliance is enabling innovative businesses to develop entirely new services and apps in the networked automotive aftermarket. For providers of telematics services, fleet managers, leasing companies, workshops or parts dealers, this data offers a great deal of added value: as Caruso brings together data from a wide range of providers. The more providers there are on the marketplace, the wider the range of opportunities for users. Data consumers can choose between different providers, offerings or combinations of the two to obtain the optimum data for their requirements. For example, a fleet manager might obtain data for the entire vehicle fleet without needing to commit to a single provider. As an initial example of how the marketplace is used, the mileage of a vehicle can be read out at predetermined maintenance intervals, allowing all necessary maintenance information to be determined and forwarded automatically to all authorised parties via the Caruso platform. One might be the workshop, which then sets a maintenance date and at the same time orders the specific parts from the parts dealer. In future, insurers might also be able to process any comprehensive insurance claims that are identified during the inspection directly with the workshop, with the driver’s consent. In addition to this flexibility, Caruso users also benefit from the availability of TecAlliance data in a standardised and harmonised form that considers country-specific characteristics and OEM regulations.

By working with Caruso, TecAlliance is making use of the opportunities of an additional sales channel for its data and services, which are being continuously expanded. The first users of this RMI data are the Scandinavian telematics service provider ABAX and the workshop software provider WERBAS. TecAlliance will be adding to the data it provides through Caruso on an ongoing basis. As a next step, it intends to integrate the querying of service details such as part numbers, price recommendations and labour times.

“With Caruso we have the opportunity as a shareholder to help guide the digital transformation in the automotive aftermarket and take part in shaping an emerging industry standard. We also benefit from interactions with partners from all sectors of the automotive market and other industries in a diverse shareholder market,” said Jürgen Mehlis, EVP of Solution & Platform Management at TecAlliance, at the go-live event.
“We are convinced that the digital aftermarket requires an open and neutral industry solution for the sale and exchange of data across different manufacturers and sectors. The Caruso digital data marketplace gives us the chance to direct our business model towards new market demands and new forms of value creation,” adds TecAlliance’s Managing Director Jürgen Buchert.

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Ultra Low Emission Zone – Euro 6 vehicles to be classed as low emission

The Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) is an area of London within which most vehicles will need to meet exhaust emission standards (ULEZ standards) or pay a daily charge to travel.

The ULEZ will operate 24 hours a day, 7 days a week within the same area as the current Congestion Charging Zone (CCZ), and comes into force on 8 April 2019.

The ULEZ standards are in addition to the Congestion Charge and the Low Emission Zone requirements.

The vehicles affected by ULEZ include motorcycles, mopeds, motorised tricycles, quadricycles, cars, small vans, large vans, 4X4 light utility vehicles, motorised horseboxes, pickups, ambulances, motorcaravans , minibuses, lorries, breakdown & recovery vehicles, snow ploughs, gritters, refuse collection vehicles, road sweepers, concrete mixers, fire engines, tippers, removals lorries, buses and coaches.

It has now been announced that diesel Euro 6 cars have been classified as low emission for the purposes of the London ULEZ and so drivers of these vehicles will be free to enter the ULEZ without charge

To check whether your vehicle will be exempt from the charge, CLICK HERE.

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New Car CO2 Report 2017 heralds UK as largest EV market in Europe

Since 2002, SMMT has produced its annual CO2 report, to give the industry an open and transparent approach to communicating the UK performance on new car CO2 emissions. The reporting uses CO2 figures from the official New European Driving Cycle (NEDC) laboratory test, which is required by law and witnessed by a government appointed agency.

2016 was another positive year for the UK automotive industry, with record low average new car and van CO2 emissions, record high registration volumes, the best car production figures in 17 years and the largest market in Europe for zero-emission capable (pure EV and plug-in hybrid) and hybrid vehicles. However, it also underscored the environmental challenges the industry faces, with a slowing rate of progress in average new car CO2 emissions and continuing concerns about urban air quality.

Alternatively Fuelled Vehicles (AFV) registrations rose by 22.2% in 2016 to 88,919 units. AFVs typically emit 40% lower CO2 than the market average.

The average new car emitted 120.1g/km CO2 in 2016, down 1.1% on 2015’s performance and 33.6% below that of 2000.

To download the full SMMT CO2 Report, CLICK HERE.

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Preparing for the General Data Protection Regulation (Part 3)

Subject access requests

Businesses should update their procedures and plan how to handle requests to take account of the new rules:

  • In most cases a business will not be able to charge for complying with a request.
  • Businesses will have a month to comply, rather than the current 40 days.
  • A business can refuse or charge for requests that are manifestly unfounded or excessive.
  • If a business refuses a request, they must tell the individual why and that they have the right to complain to the supervisory authority and to a judicial remedy. This must be done this without undue delay and at the latest, within one month.

If a business handles a large number of access requests, they should consider the logistical implications of having to deal with requests more quickly. Consideration could be given as to whether it is feasible or desirable to develop systems that allow individuals to access their information easily online.

Lawful basis for processing personal data

A business should identify the lawful basis for it processing activity in the GDPR, document it and update its privacy notice with the explanation.

Many organisations will not have thought about their lawful basis for processing personal data. Under the current law this does not have many practical implications. However, it will be different under the GDPR as some individuals’ rights will be modified depending on the lawful basis for processing personal data. The most obvious example is that people will have a stronger right to have their data deleted where consent is used as the lawful basis for processing.

A business will also have to explain its lawful basis for processing personal data in its privacy notice and when answering a subject access request. The lawful bases in the GDPR are broadly the same as the conditions for processing in the DPA. It should be possible to review the types of processing activities carried out and to identify the lawful basis for doing so. The business should document its lawful bases in order to assist with compliance with the GDPR’s ‘accountability’ requirements.


The business should review how consent is sought, recorded and managed and whether any changes are necessary. Existing consents should be refreshed now if they don’t meet the GDPR standard.

Every business should read the detailed guidance the ICO has published on consent under the GDPR, and use the consent checklist to review practices. Consent must be freely given, specific, informed and unambiguous. There must be a positive opt-in – consent cannot be inferred from silence, pre-checked boxes or inactivity. It must also be separate from other terms and conditions, and there needs to be simple ways for people to withdraw consent. Public authorities and employers will need to take particular care. Consent has to be verifiable and individuals generally have more rights where consent is relied upon to process their data.

A business is not required to automatically ‘re-paper’ or refresh all existing DPA consents in preparation for the GDPR.  But if it relies on individuals’ consent to process their data, the business must make sure it will meet the GDPR standard on being specific, granular, clear, prominent, opt-in, properly documented and easily withdrawn. If not, the consent mechanisms should be altered and fresh GDPR-compliant consent sought, or an alternative to consent found.

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