At Your Fingertips

NASTF and the VSP Registry provide security and service resources to meet any shop’s technological and information needs.

The National Automotive Service Task Force (NASTF) was created to provide a technology solution to ensure ongoing access to the technical information necessary to diagnose and repair our technologically advanced vehicle fleet. As one of the most significant success stories in the automotive industry over the past 15 years, NASTF was, and continues to be, a unique opportunity for all segments of the industry to come together for the common good of providing the best in world-class automotive service and repair for the American public.

But if information is king in the service and repair community of the 21st century, security is queen. And with a growing focus on cybersecurity in vehicle diagnosis, service and repair, NASTF becomes doubly important when you consider the value of the Vehicle Security Professional (VSP) Registry.

The VSP registry provides a process to identify, screen and authorize qualifying individuals to access security-sensitive functions such as obtaining key codes and ordering theft-related parts. When you consider the implications of having access to sensitive personal information that may be stored on a vehicle computer, the need and value become clear.

If you haven’t yet created your NASTF membership, you’re missing an important piece of the puzzle to maximize your shop’s capabilities and productivity. Joining is free and easy at nastf.org, and the online resources at your fingertips with a NASTF membership make it a no-brainer to add NASTF to your information toolbox. If you haven’t made the decision to join, here’s some information to help you better understand what NASTF is, how it works and what it can mean to your business success.

What is NASTF?

The National Automotive Service Task Force is a cooperative effort among the automotive service industry, the equipment and tool industry and automobile manufacturers (OEMs) to ensure that automotive service professionals employed outside the OEMs franchise system have the information, training, and tools needed to properly diagnose and repair today’s high-tech vehicles.

NASTF was established in fall 2000 as a national successor to a pilot program in Arizona during 1999-2000. In the Arizona program, these groups learned that they shared the common objective of ensuring swift and proper repair of customer vehicles, and that the best way to improve current information gaps was to work constructively to improve the delivery systems for that information.

Today’s rapidly advancing and changing vehicle technologies are adding enormous amounts of information that automotive service and collision repair professionals have to access and manage in the day-to-day process of maintenance, diagnosis and repair of an increasingly more computerized vehicle fleet. But if technology is the problem, it’s also the solution, and the internet and other advancements offer opportunities to address these issues.

In short, NASTF facilitates the identification and correction of gaps in the availability and accessibility of automotive service information, training, diagnostic tools and equipment and communications to automotive service professionals.

“NASTF was formed to connect OEMs and independent techs, and our role appears to become more important with time,” says Skip Potter, executive director of NASTF. “As vehicle technology advances and the complexity of vehicle service information grows, the OEM is ever-more directly connected to the independent tech – whether in discussions around the NASTF conference tables, online with OEM service information websites or in partnerships with traditional third-party, aftermarket information services.”

NASTF FOUNDING PARTNERS (2006)

Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers
Associated Locksmiths of America
Association of Global Automakers
Automotive Service Association
Automotive Service Councils of California
Equipment & Tool Institute
Intl. Automotive Technicians Network
Motor & Equipment Manufacturers Association
Motor Information Systems
National Automobile Dealers Association
National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence

What is the VSP Registry?

Information not only poses management challenges, it raises security issues as well. To address this aspect of 21st-century service, NASTF’s Vehicle Security Professional (VSP) Registry was built. It’s a service created by the NASTF Vehicle Security Committee from the NASTF Secure Data Release Model (SDRM) project. SDRM is basically a secure data exchange system.

What is now called the VSP Registry was conceived and designed cooperatively by automakers and the independent repair, insurance and law enforcement communities to allow the aftermarket access to security-sensitive information related to automobiles, including key codes, PIN numbers, immobilizer reset information and similar types of information. The NASTF VSP Registry program allows this access to security-related information while protecting the safety and security of consumers and the integrity of automobile security systems.

USA-resident* locksmiths and service technicians who are qualified in vehicle security system repairs need a subscription to the VSP Registry to purchase security codes and VIN-specific computer files directly from the OEM/automaker. Most automakers/OEMs make this information available instantly from their websites 24/7/365.

Shop owner Donny Seyfer, AMAM, sees the VSP as an integral part of helping independent shops succeed as these security concerns become a larger factor in the service and repair process. “Currently, the VSP is being used by most manufacturers to provide secure and screened access to key codes that are used to make keys and pin or immobilizer codes for the vehicles that need them during a replacement of a module that is security related,” Seyfer says. “Mercedes has a unique application using the Locksmith ID number (LSID) to control the purchase of theft-related parts (TRP). They have a form on their website that the LSID holder must fill out and submit when buying these parts from the dealer.

“The availability of these parts to the independent collision and mechanical repair shops was a long time coming and was successful because of NASTF. Several ASA members and a diligent group of specialists convinced Mercedes that its vehicles were safe in our hands. This is why the NASTF process is so important.”

The NASTF VSP Registry provides safeguards to automakers and their customers to allow access to security-related service information, tools and components to the independent service community. The VSP Registry also provides consumer choice by ensuring that vehicle owners can choose any service providers that have access to the security-related information, tools and components necessary to service their vehicles.

However, that independent access comes with certain responsibilities and controls for security-related information and tools by the owners of these resources – the automaker and the consumer. To safeguard this information, no outside entity has access to, or control of, the manufacturer’s or consumer’s data without strict security protocols and oversight.

The VSP Registry improves indemnity (compared to many current practices) for automakers from legal actions resulting from the unauthorized use, misuse or illegal use of any security-related information, and it ensures that responsibility for governance of independent repairers falls on the independent auto care industry, not automakers. The NASTF VSP Registry does all this while meeting insurance industry expectations for security with respect to the release of security-related information.

How do you join NASTF and the VSP Registry?

Signing up is easy and everything is done online at nastf.org. You’ll find the links to the VSP Registry there as well. The VSP Registry requires a more extensive registration process due to the security requirements for obtaining an LSID number. You’ll find everything you need to know on the website, along with contact information for specific questions. You can also sign up for email alerts and updates to keep up with changes.

Which OEM manufacturers have service information available through NASTF? Virtually all of them. The list runs from Acura to Volvo and even has links to the likes of exotic marques such as Aston Martin, Rolls Royce, Ferrari and Lamborghini. If it’s driving on the streets and highways of America, the manufacturer is represented on the NASTF links page on their website.

If you haven’t already incorporated NASTF and the VSP Registry into your business model, it’s something worth considering. As we move forward, the need for information access and security will continue to grow, and both NASTF and the VSP Registry will be there to provide the answers. Together, they provide an elegant solution to one of the greatest challenges facing the independent service community today and in the years ahead.

*Canadian VSPs may be eligible to participate in the Canadian program. Email John Norris in British Columbia at johnnorris@ciia.com. NASTF is unaware of any similar registry in other countries. Contact local automaker agents.

NASTF SUPPORTING PARTNERS

AAPEX
AASP-NJ NORTHEAST
Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers
American Honda
Associated Locksmiths of America
Association of Global Automakers
Auto Care
Automotive Service Councils of California
Automotive Service Association
Automotive One
AutoMechanika Chicago
BMW
John Cabaniss
CARQUEST
Dent Wizard
Equipment & Tool Institute
General Motors
International Automotive Technicians Network
Lockman Locksmiths
Motor Age Training
Motor Information Systems
National Automobile Dealers Association
Nissan
Seyfer Automotive
Spanesi Americas
Toyota Motor Sales USA
VW/Audi
VISION 2016
WORLDPAC

Comments are closed.

Powered by WordPress. Designed by Woo Themes