Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Your Right to Prevent ID Theft using GLB

As the old saying suggests for fighting identity
theft, "an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of

You have to protect your own personal and credit
identity, because no one else is going to do it for


Because unless national and state laws change some
time in the distant future, most consumers simply do
not find out when their personal information as been

While we do not pretend to be lawyers or even
financial experts, in the spirit of providing relevant
informational tips, reviews, & resources, the GLB is
another key tool at your disposal for identity theft

The Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act, otherwise known as the
Financial Services Modernization Act of 1999, is an
important law which protects consumers right to
protect their personal information from being shared.

The Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act requires financial
companies to tell you about their polices regarding
the privacy of your personal financial information.

With some exceptions, the law limits the ability of
financial companies to share your personal financial
information with certain non-affiliates. A
non-affiliate is a company that is unrelated to your
financial company, and may include:

  • Service Providers: companies hired by your financial
    company to perform a specific service, such as
    printing your checks.
  • Joint marketers: companies that have an agreement
    with your financial company to offer you other
    financial products and services.
  • Other third-party non-affiliates which could
    include companies that may want access to your
    financial companies mailing list to tell you about
    other products and services.

Under the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act your financial
company can provide your personal financial
information to non-affiliated service providers
including joint marketers. But, before it shares your
information with other third-party non-affiliates
(outside of these exceptions), your financial company
must tell you about its information sharing practices
and give you the opportunity to "opt-out".

What "Opt-Out" means: If you opt out, you limit the
extent to which the company can provide your personal
financial information to non-affiliates. If you do not
opt out within a "reasonable period of time" generally
30 days after the company mails the notice, then the
company is free to share certain personal financial

If you didn't opt out the first time you received a
privacy notice from a financial company, it's not too
late. You can always change your mind and opt out of
certain information sharing. Contact your financial
company and ask for instructions on how to opt out.
Remember, however, that any personal financial
information that was shared before you opted out
cannot be retrieved.

So, today's tip from ID Theft Secrets blog is to call
each of your financial institutions and lenders this
month as your receive your regular account

Request your name and personal information be changed to "opt-out".