FTC Seeks Comments on Proposed Identity Theft
 
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FTC Seeks Comments on Proposed Identity Theft, Active Duty Alert Regulations

San Diego, CA. FACTA-2004 Update:

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC), as part of its rule making process to get the new provisions of FACTA and the mechanisms in place for actual implementation later in 2004. The most recent being put out for public comments are having to do with Identity theft, and the "Active Duty Alert Regulations."

The FTC's proposed rules are:

The Federal Trade Commission is seeking public comment on proposed rules under the Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act (FACTA) regarding further definition of the terms 'identity theft' and 'identity theft report,' the duration of active duty alerts, and the appropriate proof of identity needed by consumers to block fraudulent trade lines in their consumer reports, place or remove fraud or active duty alerts, or obtain a file disclosure containing a truncated Social Security number under certain circumstances. FACTA, which was enacted on December 4, 2003, and amends the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), gives identity theft victims new rights to place 'fraud alerts' on their credit reports and work with creditors and credit bureaus to 'block' negative information appearing in their credit files as a result of identity theft.

FACTA also allows military personnel to place an alert on their credit report if they are deployed, and allows consumers to request that a credit bureau truncate their Social Security number when disclosing their credit report to the consumer. The Act directs the FTC to make the above-mentioned rules relating to these new rights. Comments on the proposed rules must be received on or before June 15, 2004. At the close of the comment period, the Commission will review the comments, modify the proposed rules as appropriate, and issue the rules as final.

The Commission proposes that 'identity theft' be defined as a fraud which is committed or attempted, using a person's identifying information without lawful authority and that 'identifying information' have the same meaning as the criminal statute's 'means of identification.' Consumers need to use 'identity theft reports' to obtain an extended fraud alert on their credit file and to block negative information resulting from identity theft from appearing in their credit files. To prevent misuse of identity theft reports for credit repair scams, the FTC proposes to add two elements to the definition of 'identity theft report.' First, the proposal would require that consumers allege the identity theft as specifically as possible, and second, would allow credit bureaus or creditors to request, within reasonable bounds, additional information or documentation to help them determine if identity theft actually occurred.

FACTA directs the FTC to determine the duration of active duty alerts for military personnel, setting a minimum of 12 months. The FTC proposes that 12 months is an adequate duration that will cover the time period for which the majority of service members will be deployed. The Federal Register Notice states that military personnel who receive extended deployments may place another active duty alert in their file after the first alert expires if they feel they need additional protection.

Finally, the Federal Register Notice addresses what constitutes 'appropriate proof of identity' to block a fraudulent trade line, place or remove a fraud alert, or obtain a file disclosure containing a truncated Social Security number. The proposed rule would require credit bureaus to develop 'reasonable requirements' to ensure that consumers are matched with their files and to adjust what information is requested to prevent identifiable risks of harm. The FTC suggests, using two examples, that the 'requirements' for a file match may entail full name, full address, full Social Security number, and/or date of birth, and for additional proof of identity, copies of government issued identification documents, utility bills, and other current authentication methods such as answering questions only the consumer would know.

For more information from the FTC:

Media Contact: Jen Schwartzman @ 202-326-2674

 

About the ICFE:

The Institute of Consumer Financial Education (ICFE) was founded in 1982 by the late Loren Dunton (creator of the Certified Financial Planner (CFP) designation).  The ICFE is dedicated to helping consumers of all ages to improve their spending, increase savings and use credit more wisely. 
The ICFE is an award winning, nonprofit, consumer education organization that has helped millions of people through its education programs and Resources. It publishes the Do-It-Yourself Credit File correction Guide, which is updated annually. The ICFE has distributed over one million Credit/Debit Card Warning Labels and Credit/Debit Card Sleeves world wide.

The ICFE became an official partner with the Department of Defense/Financial Readiness Campaign in June of 2004.The ICFE was an active partner in the California Student Debt Resource Awareness Project (CASDRAP) which resulted in a new web site: (studentdebthelp.org).  CASDRAP disbanded in 2010, shortly after the web site project was completed.  In 2011 the ICFE assumed the single sponsorship of the (studentdebthelp.org) web site and is now responsible for its content and operation.

The ICFE is also an on-line help for consumers who spend too much.  ICFE's spending help was featured in PARADE Magazine in the Intelligence Report section. The money helps and tips are from the ICFE's Money Instruction Book, our course in personal finance.

Visit the ICFE's other web sites at: www.financial-education-icfe.org and studentdebthelp.org.  Both sites helps consumers and students with mending spending, learning about the proper use of credit, budget and expense guidelines, how to set up and implement a spending-plan and also how to access financial education courses and how to teach children about money. Other ICFE services include: Ask Mr. G,  a free eNews, and an online resource center for students, parents and educators, plus financial education learning tools and a book store.

About the ICFE:

The Institute of Consumer Financial Education (ICFE), founded in 1982 by the late Loren Dunton (creator of the 'certified financial planner' (CFP) designation) and it is dedicated to helping consumers of all ages to improve their spending, increase savings and use credit more wisely. The ICFE trains and certifies Personal Finance Instructors for its own curriculum. It also trains and certifies Credit Report Reviewers and Identity Theft Prevention Specialists.

The ICFE is an award winning, nonprofit, consumer education organization that has helped millions of people through its education programs and Resources. It publishes the Do-It-Yourself Credit File correction Guide, now in its 16th printing and has distributed over one million 'Credit/Debit Card Warning Labels' and 'Credit/Debit Card Sleeves' world wide.

The ICFE became an official partner with the Department of Defense/Financial Readiness Campaign in June of 2004.

The ICFE is also a partner in the national Jump$tart Coalition for Financial Literacy and the California Jump$tart chapter. The ICFE staff is also active with San Diego Saves, an offshoot of America Saves, and the California Student Debt Resource Awareness Project (CASDRAP) (studentdebthelp.org).

The ICFE's on-line help for consumers who spend too much was featured in PARADE Magazine in the Intelligence Report section. The money helps and tips are from 'The Money Instruction Book,' a course in personal finance, positioned to become among the premier programs in the new bankruptcy and debtor education initiatives.

The ICFE Web site at: www.financial-education-icfe.org helps consumers with mending spending, learning about the proper use of credit, budget and expense guidelines, how to set up and implement a spending-plan and also how to access financial education courses and videos and how to teach children about money. Other ICFE services include a free eNews, and an online resource center of financial education learning tools, including videos, books, software and personal finance courses.

 
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