Financial Privacy

OECD reaffirms its support for the 1980 OECD principles on privacy, or “Fair Information Practices”

OECD | Fair Information Practices — At a key meeting of the OECD on the future of the Internet economy, the OECD Secretary General Angel Gurria reaffirmed support of the 1980 OECD Privacy Principles. Also, Secretary General Angel Gurria expressed support for formalizing the participation of civil society in OECD going forward and for paying more attention to information security and identity theft problems. Secretary General Gurria noted that “A more decentralised, networked approach to policy formulation for the Internet Economy that includes the active participation of stakeholders needs to be the norm.” Many parts of the recent OECD meeting may be viewed online.

World Privacy Forum, NCLC, and Consumer’s Union file extensive comments regarding accuracy of credit reports

Financial privacy / credit reports — The NCLC, Consumer’s Union, and the World Privacy Forum filed extensive joint comments today regarding the proposed rulemaking, Procedures to Enhance the Accuracy and Integrity of Information Furnished to Consumer Reporting Agencies under Section 312 of the Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act. The results of the proposed rulemaking will have a significant impact on how the accuracy of credit reports is defined for consumers, and will have a substantive influence over how consumers may handle credit report disputes directly with those who furnish information for the reports.

Opportunity for public comment on the accuracy of credit reports

Financial privacy | credit reports — Consumers and organizations have an opportunity to submit public comments about the accuracy and integrity of credit reports. Until February 11, the Federal Reserve Board, the Federal Trade Commission and other banking agencies will be accepting comments on their draft rulemaking regarding how creditors and other furnishers provide information to consumer reporting agencies, and which types of direct disputes they must handle. This proposed rulemaking is a key one; it defines what accuracy and integrity of information provided to consumer reporting agencies means, how disputes may be handled directly with the furnishers, and which types of direct disputes furnishers may ignore. The NCLC, Consumer’s Union, and the World Privacy Forum have written a sample letter that may be downloaded and used or modified for the comments. To file your letter, submit your comments to the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System by mailing the comments to regs.comments@federalreserve.gov with the subject line “Docket No. R–1300.”

Updates to Top Ten Opt-Out List

Opt-out | Financial privacy — The World Privacy Forum has updated its popular Top Ten Opt Out list to reflect several new change made to the Direct Marketing Association opt outs. In the past, some of the DMA opt-outs, like the Direct Marketing Association’s mailing preference lists, used to cost $1. That fee has now been removed for people opting out online. Please see item #3 on the Opt Out list for the complete update.

Security Freeze update: as of November 1, security freeze now available to consumers in all states

Security Freeze update | Financial privacy — As of November 1, 2007, the ability to place a security freeze is available nationwide at the three major credit reporting bureaus. To date, 39 states and the District of Columbia have some form of security freeze law. But now, even in the states that did not pass security freeze legislation, consumers will be able to place a security freeze. A security freeze lets you stop the disclosure of your credit report by a credit bureau. A security freeze can be especially helpful to individuals who are having persistent problems with identity theft. For more information: