Archive for the ‘News’ Category

ARA at Used Car Week

Nov 16, 2017 • NewsComments Off on ARA at Used Car Week

ARA President Dave Kennedy was asked to participate on a panel Monday night at Used Car Week, alongside officers from JD Power and Pelican Auto Finance.

The panel opened Used Car Week 2017 and was titled “The State of the Industry: The factors and trends that will shape the retail, auto finance and repossession industries in 2018.”

The association and our industry can be proud Dave was chosen to represent them at this significant conference where a majority of the attendees were c-level executives.

“Dave made a great impression at Used Car Week. The phrase ‘Relationship Recovery‘ was born, and he received a great deal of interest from several lenders in the room.” – Keith Baggett, Repossessors Inc.

Dave spoke to the current industry trends in repossession, including new technologies such as body cameras and routing systems. When discussing third-party compliance, Dave stressed the importance of lenders knowing their recovery agents and having a direct relationship with them in order to avoid risk.

We are proud of Dave and we look forward to continuing this conversation with lenders and representing our association at events like these.

Addressing Cybersecurity

Oct 19, 2017 • NewsComments Off on Addressing Cybersecurity

A survey published earlier this year showed that in the past 12 months, hackers have breached half of all small businesses in the United States. Small businesses, which often don’t have the revenue to afford their own IT departments, are especially susceptible to phishing attacks via email or fraudulent activity through their online activities.

Eighty-seven percent of small business owners don’t feel they’re at risk for a cybersecurity attack, and 1 in 3 small businesses don’t have the tools in place — firewalls, antivirus software, spam filters or data-encryption tools — to protect themselves.

The American Recovery Association (ARA) wants you to know YOU are at risk.  

National Cybersecurity Awareness Month (NCSAM) has been observed every October since 2004. The program was developed by the Department of Homeland Security and the National Cyber Security Alliance to ensure every American has the information and resources to stay safer online.

In the past, we have had webinars on things you should or should not do on social media sites. This month, ARA is using this article as our education material. With so many things to think of during a hectic day, cybersecurity might be a thought that never happens. This is why you use technology to help protect you from attacks you don’t often think about, or for many, do not understand. Make sure you have your computers protected with at least the following measures:

  1. Firewalls
  2. Cybersecurity programs such as Malwarebytes or Norton. These help block malware, ransomware, adware and other threats
  3. Use a password manager
  4. Ensure your Wi-Fi is secure on mobile devices

With these in place, you can keep out a lot of the bad stuff. Just remember, there are consequences for your online actions.

We’ve collected these cybersecurity statistics for small businesses from a variety of sources.

General Small Business Cybersecurity Statistics

The numbers show small businesses are not only at risk
for an attack, but have already been attacked:

CYBERSECURITY STATISTICS – Numbers Small Businesses Need to Know

55 percent of respondents say their companies experienced a cyberattack in the past 12 months (May 2015-May 2016), and

50 percent report they had data breaches involving customer and employee information in the past 12 months (May 2015-May 2016).

43 percent of cyberattacks target small business. Only 14 percent of small businesses rate their ability to mitigate cyber risks, vulnerabilities and attacks as highly effective.

60 percent of small companies go out of business within six months of a cyberattack.

48 percent of data security breaches are caused by acts of malicious intent. Human error or system failure account for the rest.

Small businesses are most concerned about:

As you can see, just like us most other small business industries are most concerned about the security of customer data. In the aftermath of these incidents, these companies spent an average of $879,582 because of damage or theft of IT assets. In addition, disruption to normal operations cost an average of $955,429.

The root causes of data breaches broke out as follows:

While many small businesses are concerned about cyberattacks (58 percent), more than half (51 percent) are not allocating any budget at all to risk mitigation.

Dangerous disconnect – One of the more popular responses as to why small businesses don’t allocate budget to risk mitigation was they “feel they don’t store any valuable data.” Yet a good number reported they in fact DO store pieces of customer information that are of significant value to cyber criminals:

68 percent store email addresses;

64 percent store phone numbers; and

54 percent store billing addresses.

Small businesses reported that only:

38 percent regularly upgrade software solutions;

31 percent monitor business credit reports; and

22 percent encrypt databases.

If a company has a password policy, 65 percent of respondents say they do not strictly enforce it.

16 percent of respondents admitted they had only reviewed their cybersecurity posture after they were hit by an attack.

75 percent of small businesses have no cyber risk insurance.

In the end, the keys are: get educated and be diligent. Employees have to be made aware that what may appear to them a harmless internet connection can open the door for a ruthless cyberattack.

*Portions of this article were taken from malwarebytes Labs and other open source resources.

ARA Member Highlight: Jim and Carolyn Hall

Oct 5, 2017 • ARA Member Spotlight, NewsComments Off on ARA Member Highlight: Jim and Carolyn Hall

This month’s member highlight is a special one. We want to recognize Jim Hall and his wife Carolyn who have just sold their company, Hall Recovery, after 31 successful years. We could not be happier for them and we wish them well in their retirement.

Jim and Carolyn have always been an integral part of the repossession industry as members of the American Recovery Association, National Finance Adjusters, and Time Finance Adjusters.

Jim spent most of his time away from his business working non-stop for the American Recovery Association as a member, board member, president and past president several times, and immediate past president, and is still helping whenever called upon for any task.

Jim has received numerous awards from ARA, including the Dedicated Service Award in 2013, the Key Award in 2016 & 2009, and the Special Recognition Award in 2016, to name a few. All well deserved.

“In the past 35 plus years I have known Jim, he has been the epitome of what repossession companies should be like. He has remained steadfast in his moral concepts, with an incredible work ethic. Most importantly, he has a deep love for his family and friends; I am happy to be among that group. I wish him and Carolyn truly the best in their retirement.” – Immediate Past President Jerry Wilson.

“I can’t believe Jim Hall retired without me. The best of luck, I love you brother. I still remember your old Chevrolet Lumina in Dallas years ago. Those were the days!” – Kevin McGivern, Equitable Services Inc.

“Jim, it was my honor to work with you all these years. You are a person of integrity and loyalty to the American Recovery Association, and Carolyn putting up with you all these years!” – Mary Jane Hogan, National Locating and Recovery.

“I am happy and sad for Jim and Carolyn. Sad, that he will not be in the boardroom, saying ‘now wait a minute, let’s talk this out’. I am happy that Carolyn and Jim will have more time to spend with their only child, Austin, who is in the music industry and who will most certainly one day make it big. This is not a goodbye, but a new beginning for Jim and Carolyn.” – Joan Hudson, ARB of Lousiana.

Jim & Carolyn, we appreciate you and everything you’ve done for ARA and the repossession industry. Thank you for being outstanding ARA members and wonderful friends. On to the next adventure!



IRVING, Texas, September 15, 2017 – The American Recovery Association (ARA), the world’s largest association of recovery and remarketing professionals, is excited to announce a new partnership with Recovery Database Network (RDN). RDN, a business unit of KAR Auction Services (NYSE: KAR), is a specialized provider of software and data solutions related to the recovery of assets for the automotive finance industry. The agreement will help lenders manage and monitor vendor compliance by integrating ARA’s Compliance Monitoring System and compliance metrics with the various software solutions offered by RDN.

RDN VendorVision is a secure, web-based compliance management platform that connects companies with their vendors.

“This partnership will make RDN VendorVision a central component of the ARA’s broad portfolio of exclusive member benefits,” said Dave Kennedy, president of ARA. “By integrating RDN’s Recovery Solution and VendorVision products with ARA’s Compliance Monitoring System, clients will now have the ability to set standards and verify the necessary compliance training required for their recovery vendor network – creating a ‘culture of compliance’ within the American Recovery Association.”

There are currently nearly 150 lenders already utilizing both the RDN and the ARA systems. These lenders, as well as repossession agents within the industry, can benefit from this partnership.

“RDN is committed to supporting our lending partners with simplified, integrated and efficient products and services,” said Michael Briggs, president, and CEO of CarsArrive and RDN. “By working with ARA, we can help promote, monitor and manage compliance and meet the shared needs of repossession agents and lenders.”

The RDN partnership is just one of the many benefits offered to ARA members. Some of ARA’s other partnerships and member benefits include AW Direct, Experian Auto-check, Goodyear Tires, Direct Connect, Cruise One, Harding Brooks Insurance, National Independent Auto Dealers Association and PRIOS.

For more information about ARA, its partnerships and its member benefits, please visit 

About American Recovery Association, Inc.

American Recovery Association (ARA) is the world’s largest association of recovery and remarketing professionals. ARA members specialize in locating and repossessing collateral on behalf of lending institutions, including banks, savings institutions, finance companies, credit unions, rental/leasing companies, and auto, truck and equipment dealers. ARA is a nonprofit association whose members serve 27,000 national and international cities. All members are certified independent business operators. For more information, call 972.755.4755 or visit the website at

About Recovery Database Network: RDN is a specialized provider of software and data solutions related to the recovery of assets for the automotive finance industry. RDN connects auto lending institutions with every company in the repossession and disposition value chain: repossession companies; field visit companies; skip‐tracing companies; forwarding companies; and auto auctions. VendorVision from RDN is a secure, web-based compliance management platform that connects companies with their vendors. With VendorVision, organizations can define their compliance standards, manage documentation, track vendor performance, and assign tasks to achieve alignment. VendorVision offers a simple, user-friendly interface that is integrated with RDN’s industry-leading repossession management software.

RDN Media Contact

Tobin Richer

KAR Auction Services, Inc.

(317) 249-4521



A Look Back at NARS 2017

Aug 18, 2017 • NewsComments Off on A Look Back at NARS 2017

We had a wonderful time at NARS 2017 and hope you did too. Each year, we strive to make the event even bigger and better than before. From the networking and fun during the NARS Golf Tournament, the AT&T Stadium Tour and the DRN sponsored Patriot Party, to the roundtable sessions and dynamic speakers, there was never a dull moment. Attendees left the summit with key takeaways to bring to their businesses, inspired to finish the year out strong. Here’s a look at all the fun we had at NARS 2017.

Member highlight: Vreeland Wood of VJ Wood Towing, Recovery & Repair

Jun 6, 2017 • ARA Member Spotlight, NewsComments Off on Member highlight: Vreeland Wood of VJ Wood Towing, Recovery & Repair

VJ Towing


This month’s member highlight is on Vreeland Wood of VJ Wood Towing, Recovery & Repair, a third generation, family owned and operated towing and recovery company located in Hamburg, PA.

Vreeland and his wife Linda are very involved in their local community and have just donated land for use as a community garden. They also serve on the Board of Directors of “The Our Town Foundation,” a non- profit community economic development organization.

This foundation not only helps the city maintain its properties, but also hosts several local festivals, including the famous “HAMBURGER FESTIVAL,” which garners around 40,000 people!

Mr. Wood is the operations chairman and serves on the council at his church. He is also on a committee helping to purchase and restore their local theater, “Hamburg Strand,” an icon in their city.

For the past 12 years, Vreeland and his wife have enjoyed traveling many states with 2 of their 6 kids with their “RepoZest Drag Racing Team,” and are the proud grandparents of 7 grandchildren under the age of 3 l/2 years.

Thank you Vreeland, for being an outstanding ARA member!

Member Highlight: David Landy

May 16, 2017 • ARA Member Spotlight, NewsComments Off on Member Highlight: David Landy

Screenshot at May 16 17-21-43

This month’s member highlight is on David Landy of Universal Auto Recovery in Detroit, Michigan. David has been an ARA member since 1985 and is heavily involved in the Detroit community. He and his wife Carolyn are actively involved in their church, serving as deacon and chaplain. For the last 10 years, David has facilitated a group called Celebrate Recovery, an outreach program for those living in the inner city who are struggling with various problems, ranging from hurts and hang ups to addictions.

Outside of this ministry, David and Carolyn enjoy fishing, hunting and competitive archery. They have six children and five grandchildren, with another grandbaby on the way. Thank you, David, for being an outstanding ARA member for the past 32 years!

Member Highlight: Malcolm & Michele Ray

Apr 6, 2017 • NewsComments Off on Member Highlight: Malcolm & Michele Ray

safety adjusters

This month’s member highlight is on Malcom and Michele Ray, owners of Safety Adjusters, Inc. and high school sweethearts who’ve been together for nearly 35 years. Safety Adjusters, Inc. was founded in 1965 by Doyle Ray, Malcolm’s Dad; the two bought the company in 1988 and have been running it side by side ever since.

They have been ARA members since 1981 and also belong to TFA. Malcolm is a lifetime member of the Young Men’s Business League (YMBL) and has served in numerous positions throughout the years, including President, Fair Chairman, Rodeo Chairman and Board Member.

Both Malcolm and Michele have been volunteers and have donated their time to working YMBL charity events and to various other efforts to raise money to find a cure for Cancer, Muscular Dystrophy and many other diseases.

Michele is an animal rights activist, donating time and money to local animal shelters in an attempt to rescue and find forever homes for neglected and abused animals.

When not working or donating his time, Malcolm enjoys working on his farm, traveling with family and trail riding.  Michele enjoys anything family, interior decorating and design, and for those of you who know her… shopping!

Register Now for the March Webinar

Mar 22, 2017 • NewsComments Off on Register Now for the March Webinar


Join us for our March webinar focusing on:

Social Media & Workplace Violence

presented by Dave Kennedy, ARA Director of Compliance & CEO of First Credit Resources


Wednesday, March 29
11:00 a.m. CT / 12:00 p.m. ET



Thursday, March 30
2:00 p.m. CT /3:00 p.m. ET

American Recovery Association provides a free continuing education webinar series for recovery and remarketing professionals. The one-hour webinar offers education about the latest recovery laws and regulations, compliance policies and industry issues.

This presentation is geared towards owners, managers, employees, and field agents. ARA members must register online for the webinar with individual email addresses to receive a certificate of completion. If computer sharing is necessary, please provide a list of employee names and email addresses in an excel spreadsheet to

If you have any questions or feedback about our continuing education webinar series, please contact ARA Home Office at 972-755-4755 or

Home Office Has Moved!

Mar 1, 2017 • ARA Member Spotlight, NewsComments Off on Home Office Has Moved!


That’s right, our office has officially moved. The new address is: 1400 Corporate Drive, Suite 175 | Irving, TX 75038. Please take note of this address change for any of your administrative purposes, especially for any mail you plan to send us. We would like to highlight Nichole Harvill, CSR, of A.R.B. of Louisiana Inc. for being the first visitor to ARA’s new home office! We’d also like to thank Tricia Corkern and Reina Pastrana for holding down the fort at home office and for their exceptional service to ARA.

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