Saturday, June 03, 2006

Latest California Identity Theft Bill Moves Forward

Latest-California-Identity-Theft-Bill-Moves-Forward-audio post - click to play

California lead the nation in 2002 with the enactment of a
tough disclosure law requiring companies suffering data
breaches to notify consumers their personal information
is at risk to identity theft.

That law ultimately lead to the record number of disclosures,
130 and climbing, we've seen reported within the past two years.
High profile cases such as Choicepoint, MasterCard International,
and most recently the Veteran's Affairs department served to
underscore the need for tough disclosure laws across all 50
U.S. states.

Still, though, our U.S. Congress has not only not acted the
past year with new laws, but many would conclude their efforts
to undermine the California disclosure law smack of attempts
to shield their real constituents (big financial services &
large industrial firms) from truly being held accountable
for securing sensitive consumer information.


Yet, in the state of California there's a senator who
not only was the genesis of the 2002 disclosure law, but
is now back again with a new piece of legislation
gaining momentum.

That bill, which recently passed to the assembly for approval,
attempts to eliminate the risk of credit card fraud resulting
from the current practice by retailers of providing your credit
card number on printed receipts.

If passed by the California assembly in June, this bill when
enacted as law, would provide consumers another potent
weapon
in their fight against identity theft and credit fraud.

Retailers would be required to remove your credit card number
from their purchase receipts so that a dishonest employee or
dumpster diver could not get easily commit credit fraud against
you.


So, our tip for today is to check back with us later this month
for an update on this important new bill. Also, if you happen to
live in another state which does NOT yet provide you this level
of protection (unfortunately outside of California most don't),
contact your state senators to petition for this right.

In the interim, though, since the legislative process moves far
slower than identity thieves, enroll yourself in a quality
credit monitoring service.

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