Senator Jon Corzine (D-N.J.) plans to introduce legislation that aims to prevent ID theft by requiring companies to implement security systems that protect customers' personal data.
Corzine unveiled his proposal, the Identity Theft Prevention and Victim Recovery Act, during a Senate hearing on ID theft. The hearing was held in the wake of high-profile breaches involving ChoicePoint and others, in which personal data was compromised.
The bill would require financial institutions and other commercial entities, including data brokers like ChoicePoint, to establish security systems that protect the personal data of their customers. The CEO would be required to personally attest that the safeguards are in place and that the company monitors compliance.
The legislation also would require firms to promptly notify affected customers in the event of a breach involving sensitive customer information.
"Make no mistake about it, identity theft poses a very real threat to our economy and it is on the rise," Corzine said in a statment. "With so many instances of fraudsters seeking to abuse an individual's good name, it is clear that more must be done to prevent the proliferation of identity theft."