Identity Theft: Recent Developments Involving the Security of Sensitive Consumer Information, Hearings before the Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs, United States Senate, One Hundred Ninth Congress, First Session on Recent Developments Involving the Security of Sensitive Consumer Information Relating to Identity Theft, Focusing on Laws Currently Applicable to Resellers of Consumer Information, March 10 and 15, 2005 [open pdf - 1MB]
From the opening statement of Chairman Richard C. Shelby: "This afternoon we are going to hold the first of two hearings to examine the level of security that has been provided to sensitive financial information. While two incidents have received significant media attention and brought this issue to the forefront, I want to make clear that these events are only a small part of larger developments and note that I feel this overall subject requires broad, not simply anecdotal, consideration. The fact is, technology has profoundly changed our economy. Automation, depersonalized transactions, and the electronic storage, manipulation, and transfer of massive amounts of sensitive information are entirely routine. While there are significant benefits associated with these developments, we must also recognize that there are some significant risks associated with them as well. Most notably our rapid-fire, credit-in-a-moment economy provides tremendous opportunities for fraud and identity theft. If a crook gets hold of someone's personal information such as their name, date of birth, and Social Security number they can steal millions of dollars and wreak havoc on that person's life and credit history in only a matter of moments. For this reason, I believe it is paramount that this kind of sensitive information be properly protected. In the past, much of the focus regarding identity theft prevention has been directed on what an individual can do to protect themselves. This was and remains very important, but identity theft criminals have grown more sophisticated and are more aggressively pursuing information from centralized data sources. At a minimum, recent events indicate that we must remain constantly vigilant regarding the financial information, security practices and entities that hold millions, if not billions, of financial records. Thus, the purpose of today's hearing is to gain insight into the state of the industry compliance with the laws designed to protect personal financial information and to learn whether the current legal framework provides adequate protections and has kept pace with the change in the marketplace." Statements, letters, and materials submitted for the record include those of the following: Senators Shelby, Corzine, Sarbanes, Johnson, Reed, Dole, Schumer, Patrick Leahy, Deborah Platt Majoras, Larry Johnson, Amy S. Friend, Bunning, Allard, Don McGuffey, Evan Hendricks, Barbara Desoer.
S. Hrg. 109-451; Senate Hearing 109-451
Government Printing Office, Congressional Hearings: http://www.gpoaccess.gov/chearings/index.html