Ask Legislators to Help Stop the Data Breaches
Data Breaches are a Big Problem. For the past several years, merchant data breaches have been increasing. Although most consumers have probably only heard about a few breaches, over 1,500 data security breaches occurred in 2014 which exposed over 1 billion data records.
Credit unions are required by law to have the highest consumer protection standards. Merchants on the other hand, are not subject to the same federal data protection standards. This means that some merchants fail to invest sufficiently in data security measures. As a result, it can be easier for hackers to gain access to a person’s credit card number, debit pin number, or other sensitive data through a merchant. Hackers can then sell this information to bad actors, or use it themselves to fraudulently buy things with the stolen data.
When a data breach occurs, the merchants are not required to pay the costs to send individuals their new cards, and generally pay none of the fraudulent charges an individual may have on their cards or accounts. Additionally, credit unions are limited in what they can inform you in regards to the breach, like which merchant was the cause of your data being compromised.
With the introduction of The Data Security Act of 2015 (H.R. 2205/S.916), Congress can help stop costly data breaches. This legislation will raise standards for all industry groups ensuring that all those who are trusted to handle consumers’ private information will maintain the same data security protection standards as credit unions.
This bill would also create a Federal data security standard. Elevating standards across the country without compromising states with more rigorous security requirement in their laws is a key component to this bill.
Finally, the bill provides a Federal notification requirement on the part of merchants when data breaches occur.
Our payment system serves millions of consumers, protecting this system is a shared responsibility and merchants must do their part to protect consumer data. We need to work together to invest the necessary resources and combat threats to the security of consumers personal information. This bill achieves that goal.
Take action today!