California proposal would ban data release for research

Share this article:

A California legislator is proposing a ban on state agencies handing out Social Security numbers and other personal data unless required for law enforcement purposes.

Sen. Debra Bowen (D-Redondo Beach) is proposing the ban in response to an August 1 incident at U.C. Berkeley, when a researcher's computer was hacked. The researcher had names and social security numbers of 600,000 in-home care workers and recipients, which she received from California's Department of Social Services.

Her proposal would repeal California laws that allow state agencies to release Social Security numbers and other personal data to public and private researchers.

"Social Security numbers are the key to identity theft and state agencies ought to be guarding them like the Hope diamond, not handing them out like holiday stocking stuffers," Bowen said in a prepared statement.

Bowen's proposal would expand on her Senate Bill 168 of 2001 and Senate Bill 25 of 2003. Both imposed restrictions on how businesses and government agencies use Social Security numbers.

http://democrats.sen.ca.gov/senator/bowen/

Share this article:
You must be a registered member of SC Magazine to post a comment.

Sign up to our newsletters

More in News

LEADS Act addresses gov't procedure for requesting data stored abroad

LEADS Act addresses gov't procedure for requesting data ...

Senators introduced the legislation last week as a means of amending the Electronic Communications Privacy Act (ECPA).

Report: Intrustion prevention systems made a comeback in 2013

Report: Intrustion prevention systems made a comeback in ...

A new report indicates that intrusion prevention systems grew 4.2 percent in 2013, with growth predicted to continue.

Mobile device security sacrificed for productivity, study says

Mobile device security sacrificed for productivity, study says

A Ponemon Institute study, sponsored by Raytheon, revealed that employees increasingly use mobile devices for work but cut corners and circumvent security.