Senate Banking Eyes New Data Security Bill

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Two members of the Senate Banking Committee introduced yet another bill last week aimed at stemming the growing number of data breaches.

The bill would do three main things: require users of confidential data to develop measures to safeguard the data; require them to investigate any breach of security; and require them to notify customers if a breach has been discovered that could cause 'substantial harm' to their customers. The bill defines confidential data as, first and last names, addresses, telephone numbers in combination with Social Security numbers, driver's license numbers, Taxpayer Identification Numbers; as well as sensitive account information, like credit and debit card numbers.

The bill, co-sponsored by Sens. Robert Bennett (R-UT), and Thomas Carper (D-DE), is similar to a bill that has been passed by the House Financial Services Committee. There are as many as 10 bills pending in both the House and Senate that would address data security.

Separately, Jeff Post, CEO of CUNA Mutual Group, was in Washington last week to lobby for uniform national standards on data security, including enactment as law the MasterCard and Visa rule that merchants must destroy all personal card information once it has been processed.

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