Security breach notification laws (WSJ)

In a consumer alert on information security, the Wall Street Journal of July 18, 2005, R6, examines the far-reaching effects of California's law that requires its residents to be notified if the security of their personal data has been breached. At least 30 states have passed similar laws, and a national notification standard is being considered in Washington. Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), citing this issue as "the largest single growing crime in America," has introduced a measure requiring institutions to notify all consumers of breaches, regardless of state borders; after a breach, institutions must give consumers contact information for credit-reporting agencies and a description of the data compromised; and companies must quickly inform consumers of breaches or face steep fines. (WSJ is available in the Library)

The National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) provides a web page on this subject, 2005 Breach of Information Legislation. It gives summaries of legislation introduced in 35 states and the laws enacted in 16 of those states this year.


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