Vehicle Tracking Obligations

#HRFridayFact: Employers can only use vehicle tracking with their employees’ knowledge and consent & must comply with the Data Protection Act

The proliferation of GPS technology in recent years has made vehicle tracking technology significantly more accessible and intricate. Employers who deploy vehicle tracking must do so transparently and remember that vehicle information that can identify a specific individual will fall within the remit of the Data Protection Act.

Vehicle tracking can have some major benefits for businesses. Information such as the vehicle location, distance travelled, route taken and driver habits can easily be monitored. This data can then be used to highlight fuel inefficiencies, monitor vehicle wear and tear, improve driver habits and of course significantly contribute to vehicle security. All of which can help improve overall efficiency and customer service.

Organisations that use vehicle tracking however must be very clear about their legal obligations.

Employees must be made aware that their vehicles will be tracked and consent to it. This can be accomplished within the terms of their employment contract. If the vehicle is made available for private use, then there must be a mechanism to suspend tracking outside of business hours; such as a privacy button.

Overzealous monitoring may well cause ill-feeling or suspicion amongst employees so we recommend that employers have a policy in place that explains the reasons why vehicle tracking is in place and how any information will be used. To comply with data protection, the policy should include details of why the data will be gathered, how it will be used and stored and who has access to it.

If there is a reasonable belief that a company vehicle has been used inappropriately or that there are unusual patterns of activity or non-activity then the tracking data can be used to investigate this. A normal investigation procedure should ensue and the vehicle tracking data can be brought in as evidence.

Inappropriate use of a vehicle that brings a company into disrepute or falsifying company documents such as a timesheet could warrant as much as a dismissal so it’s paramount that your policy is up to date and accurate so that any evidence used is admissible.

For more support with implementing or enforcing a vehicle tracking or monitoring policy you know where we are. Call on 01452 331331 or e-mail

21 July 2017, 13:52