If You Have These Apps on Your Phone, They Might Be Raising Your Insurance Rate

Some apps are selling your driving habits to your insurer.

A driver uses a map on their phone
Updated July 18, 2024
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Have a high car insurance rate? Your phone may be tattling on you.

According to a recent report from the New York Times, some apps are tracking your driving habits and selling that data to your insurer. These apps use specific opt-in features that track your locations and movements but don't necessarily make it clear that your information will be sold later.

Some of the apps involved may surprise you because they aren't directly related to cars — one app is a family tracking app, while another creates detailed weather reports.

And this isn't insurers' first attempt at tracking individual drivers. Previously, Progressive Insurance tried using car dongles, and ZenDrive used its own app to monitor its customers' driving habits.

At a time when saving every penny counts, read on for the three apps drivers should be mindful of.

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Life360

dusanpetkovic1/Adobe talking about specifications of cars

Life360 is a location-tracking app that's popular with parents. In addition to tracking phone locations, the app has tools to facilitate driving safety, digital safety, emergency assistance, and roadside services.

Life360 also has features that rely on the phone's sensor and motion data. For example, customers can opt into a feature that notifies them if a family member crashes their car. This feature is powered by an analytics company called Arity, which buys access to the customer's data and then sells it to its parent company, Allstate.

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MyRadar

MyRadar The logo for the MyRadar app

MyRadar is a weather app that offers detailed forecasts. The app also has an opt-in feature called "MyDrives," powered by the data broker Arity. 

"MyRadar app users can now quickly access personalized insights about their drives before they get behind the wheel," the Arity website says about the feature. 

"Users can look up if the drives they typically make are safe when road conditions could be dangerous. This new feature within the MyRadar app, MyDrives, pairs Arity’s Predictive Mobility solution with MyRadar’s weather technology, helping users determine if they should take a different path, leave at a different time, or both."


GasBuddy

GasBuddy The logo for the GasBuddy app

GasBuddy is an app that helps customers find the cheapest gas stations in their area. The app also has an opt-in feature that rates the fuel efficiency of customers' drives, again powered by Arity.

The "fuel savings score" is determined by "analyzing app users’ past driving behaviors to predict future fuel consumption needs," Arity's website reads. "Arity is able to analyze driving behaviors, mileage, and other comparable data" to create this score.

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Bottom line

littlewolf1989/Adobe couple sitting inside new car

To make matters more interesting, Arity is selling data that isn't aggregated. The company sells information on individual drivers, so Allstate and its partners can see exactly how customers drive.

But remember, the features listed above are all "opt-in," so there is a world in which you can have these apps downloaded without Arity selling your data. Just be sure to click "opt-out" when the app prompts you to do so. 

It's so important to be diligent when it comes to technology and managing your bills


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Author Details

Jennifer Adams

Jennifer Adams is a writer for FinanceBuzz. Her goal is to help consumers make smart shopping decisions, and she loves discovering products from emerging brands.