Friday, July 6, 2007

Limiting Access to Social Security Numbers

Assemblymember Dave Jones' bill, AB 1168 will be considered by the Senate Committee on Judiciary next Tuesday, July 10. The bill would establish a task force to review college and universities' collection, use, storage, and retention of students' social security numbers, and submit a report of its findings and recommendations to the Office of Privacy Protection and to the Assembly and Senate Committees on Judiciary within two years. It would also require local government agencies, the Franchise Tax Board, and the Secretary of State's office to truncate SSNs to four digits before releasing them to the public record.

Assemblymember Jones explains:

Anyone scanning through records at the county recorder’s office has an appallingly high likelihood of stumbling over someone else’s name and social security number. For a criminal intent on ID theft, it’s like an open door to Fort Knox – it’s free gold.

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