State Rep. Miceli & Colleagues Pass Consumer Protection Bill In Response To Equifax Data Breach

BOSTON, MA — Representative Miceli and the House of Representatives earlier this week voted to pass a strong consumer protection bill that would help those who are victims of identity fraud, as well as impose additional requirements about the collection and selling of sensitive financial data.

“After the security breach with some of the credit bureaus, I was disgusted by the reactions of the companies and the lack of accountability. One CEO resigned, and was given a golden parachute that was more money than some families see in a lifetime,” said Representative Miceli on the passage of the bill. “Even worse I saw the other day that the data breach could have been even worse than initially reported, and it’s clear that Washington’s regulatory agencies are not doing much about it. Today’s bill will help protect those here in Massachusetts at least, and will help provide another level of security and rights when dealing with our sensitive personal information.”

The bill included several provisions such as extending free credit monitoring for anyone’s who information is compromised for 60 months following a breech, which would allow consumers to know if their data has been sold to criminals who may wait to open up new lines of credit years after purchasing stolen information. The bill also increased transparency for consumers as it requires consumers to approve a credit check by signing a separate line when applying for a new line of credit, eliminating confusion about what bureaus would be used and how far back a requested credit check would look.

In addition consumers were granted protections before their credit could be reinstated or unfrozen by a bureau, with written notification becoming required a minimum of at least four weeks provided to the individual. In contrast, previous law required only five days-notice by a bureau, leaving many consumers unable to react and continue protecting their credit scores after a breech or refutation.

Representative Miceli said, upon its passing, “I think this is a great bill, and the consumers of Massachusetts won today. I am proud to have supported it.”

(NOTE: The above press release is from State Rep. Jim Miceli’s Office.)

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