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DMA Statement on Identity Theft
NEW YORK, February 24, 2005 - The Direct Marketing Association (The DMA) issued the following statement regarding Senator Chuck Schumer's (D-NY) press conference today:
"The DMA agrees with Senator Schumer that identity theft is a major sap on the national economy, costing consumers and businesses billions of dollars every year," said John A. Greco, Jr., president & CEO, The DMA. "As the Senator alluded to, there are many legitimate uses for data and efforts must be taken to ensure that legitimate and appropriate access to that data, which is critical to the lifeblood of the economy and to consumer value, safety, convenience and choice, is maintained."
"A delicate balance must be struck," continued Greco. "In order for an organization to be certain with whom it is doing business - to prevent identity theft - it must have access to data verifying the identity of its customers and donors."
"The DMA believes that all marketers must put into place controls aimed at preventing unauthorized, inappropriate or indiscriminant access to personally identifiable information."
"Security of consumer information is imperative to maintain trust in our information economy."
"As the nature of information technology advances, so, too, must business security efforts. The DMA's information security guidelines for marketers require that organizations - both marketers and legitimate organizations that use such data - develop staff policies, procedures, training, and responsiveness measures to protect personally identifiable information.
A checklist of information security procedures developed by The DMA in cooperation with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and based on DMA guidelines are available at www.the-dma.org/privacy/informationsecurity.shtml.
"We would encourage all organizations that use personally identifiable information, to implement and regularly review controls on the use and dissemination of such data."
"The DMA strongly believes that all levels of law enforcement - local, state, federal - should have necessary resources to help combat ID theft and fraud, which threatens to undermine the foundation of our information economy," added Greco.