Blogger Lorna Brown was all set to buy a new car at South Bay BMW. She and the sales team agreed on price, trade-in, everything. But when she put down the cash, she was asked for her thumbprint. When she balked at turning over such personal data to a car dealer, much haggling ensued — even a frantic phone call to the boss by staffers eager to not lose the sale. In the end, Brown walked — miffed — and wrote about it.
The resident fat cat was phoned, taking our call from his vacation spot in Hawaii. He replied that the collection and storage of biometric data is his policy.
He would not make any exceptions. The sales staff was clearly paralyzed here - they’d spent time making this sale happen too.
“He pays our salary, and that’s his rule,” they said.
“Well, customers pay his salary, and if he keeps treating them like criminals, I can’t imagine he’ll be able to afford many more trips to Hawaii,” I replied.
I might as well have been talking to the carpet.
Her tagline: "Calling around to a few other dealers, I felt like a criminal simply by ASKING whether they intended to fingerprint me as part of their sales process. At the very first dealer I called, the receptionist said 'We don’t believe in treating our customers like criminals.'"