Progressive Insurance Snapshot Discount Program
Progressive has a nice little automobile insurance discount program out that they call “Snapshot”. Using this program, your policy premium is not based on how you say you drive, or what your driving record indicates (depending on whether you have been lucky or unlucky in your interactions with law enforcement), but on how you really drive.
How does Progressive do this? Once a customer purchases a policy and asks for a “snapshot” discount, the company mails that customer a little device. (Perky spokeswoman Flo likes to show them off in her commercials.) Upon receipt of the small gadget, the customer then plugs it into the automobile’s diagnostic port, usually found under the steering wheel somewhere around the steering column depending upon what model vehicle you drive. Vehicles older than 1996 and some other models do not have such a port so would not qualify for this discount.
Once the device is installed, it collects information on when and how the vehicle is operated. It records the times of day the vehicle is driven, the speed and distance, as well as how often the vehicle is stopped suddenly. It does not care whether you stop suddenly because you were cut off or were just inattentive and following the vehicle in front of you too closely.
Lest you try to pull a fast one and remove the device for your night out on the town, and the device records the disconnection.
The idea is that policy-holders who drive fewer miles during safer times of the day and have safer driving habits could pay less for their insurance coverage than those who do not. After 30 days of data-collecting, Progressive will award a policy reduction of anywhere from 0 to 30%. After six months of use, the snapshot device can be returned to the company and the policy deduction remains in force unless a significant coverage change is requested.
If you are worried about privacy infringement, Progressive’s official website indicates that the company will not share the collected data with any third party unless it is required by law, or to service your insurance policy, prevent fraud or perform research. The information also will not be used to determine fault in an accident unless the policy holder gives permission.
Progressive’s “Snapshot” is available in all states but Alaska, California, Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Massachusetts, North Carolina, Tennessee, Washington state and West Virginia. This article is written for informational purposes and is not intended to take the place of competent local legal counsel. The writer is not affiliated with Progressive Insurance in any way.