Monday, July 31, 2006

Bankers Fight Tougher Identity Theft Alerts

Bankers-Fight-Tougher-Identity-Theft-Alerts-audio post - click to play

Is it any wonder why identity theft
continues to
skyrocket with the
attitudes of bankers who are

resisting recently proposed new
rules from
regulators from not one,
but 5 federal agencies?


The prestigious Federal Reserve, our nation's
central bank, unveiled proposals which would
require financial institutions to take detailed
measures to prevent the breach of customer's
sensitive financial data.

But, bankers and their lobbyists have continued
to balk at any attempts to increase consumer
data security - especially from rapid credit
fraud and identity theft.

"This is another unfunded, well-intentioned
mandate that could mushroom into a bureaucratic
nightmare and ultimately cost consumers more
for banking services," said Alan Rowe,
president of First Commercial Bank of Florida.


Here's why:

Under the federal proposal, banks would have to "red flag"
more than 30 types of suspicious
transactions to help
head off possible security breaches indicative of fast moving
identity theft rings and fraud artists.

For instance, a change-of-address request from a
customer quickly followed by
requests for
replacement credit cards
could be a sign that
a fraud artist is at work on that customer's accounts.

But, bankers only concerned with maintaining
their profit margins could care less about
your data being protected from the new threats
and tactics used by modern identity thieves.

"...every time they require us to do something
more, it costs a lot of money," said Randy
Burden", a veteran Orlando banker.


With attitudes like these, is it any wonder
banks both large and small have quietly
lobbied
Congress for years to derail
any significant
federal laws to stem
the rising tide of out of control identity theft?

This is part of the rationale that has left over
80 million Americans the victims of
identity theft
or compromised personal
data within the past 18
months without
any national law being enacted which would
hold institutions accountable for the inept
and shoddy data security practices which
lead to identity theft.

So, our tip for today is to seek your own protection
from the identity thieves who understand all too well
the dirty secret bankers have kept from the American
public for years.

Enroll in any credible credit monitoring program and
act today to contact your bank to "opt out" of their
affiliate data sharing practices. It is your right under
the
law to remove your name and personal
information
from being released without
your consent to their marketing
partners.

By doing these two easy acts, you will immeasurably
lower
your odds of becoming a victim of identity
theft and credit
fraud simply due to a company's
lax data security practices which could needlessly
expose your data through another "lost" computer
episode.

3 Comments:

At 10:26 AM, Blogger Nathan said...

Thanks for the advice, it seems like even large banks cannot be trusted these days with any sort of sensitive data. After CitiBank, Bank of America along with other smaller banks lost client data, I have a hard time giving banks all of this sensitive information.

Unless they change their procedures and the Fed decided to lay down the law on data security, other banks could be just as vulnerable.

 
At 1:01 AM, Anonymous JsonXid said...

How prophetic you were, Nathan.

Did you read what just happened to Chase and Circuit City card holders?

"Get a load of this"

 
At 2:21 AM, Anonymous name withheld by request said...

As a consumer I feel like I've really been ripped off twice.

First by the extra high rates Circuit City charged for the charge card I could have gotten cheaper by going directly from Chase.

Second - not having my card information thrown out like it was two day old garbage.

 

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