2003-06-06 / Community

Pheffer Sets Privacy Bill

Pheffer Sets Privacy Bill

Assemblywoman Audrey Pheffer, Consumer Affairs and Protection Committee Chair, and Speaker Sheldon Silver have announced that the house would take up a six-bill legislative package today aimed at protecting the privacy of New York State residents and limiting the dissemination of consumer information.

According to Pheffer, the bills taken up would:

Prohibit the sale, lease or exchange of a consumer’s electronic mail address and other personal identifying information obtained on-line without consent (a.5153-Pheffer);

Restrict the dissemination and collection of social security numbers (a.532 - Greene);

Prohibit the sending of unsolicited advertising through fax machines (a.2266 - Magee);

Provide increased security to electronic credit and debit card transactions by prohibiting businesses from printing more than the last five account digits or card expiration date on any receipt (A.5150a - Pheffer);

Grant consumers the option to prohibit the sale or exchange of personal information possessed by the issuer of a credit, charge or debit card (a.2837 - Kaufman); and

Require credit card protection service offers to explain that purchase of service is not necessary to retain credit card (a.5148 - Pheffer).

In addition to the legislative action, Speaker Silver announced that Assemblywoman Pheffer would convene a series of industry and consumer roundtable discussions to address unsolicited mail advertisements, or SPAM. According to Pheffer the roundtable discussions would commence this fall.

"Although the Assembly passed legislation last year to address the growing problem of SPAM, the technology is changing, and there is currently no consensus among consumers or industry officials as to how to achieve comprehensive and effective legislation," said Silver. "Therefore, I have asked Assemblywoman Pheffer to bring all parties to the table to reach a goal, rather than take up legislation this year that will not adequately deal with this important matter."

"It is my hope that extensive input from those with the most knowledge and experience dealing with the technological aspects of the issue, with the necessary federal and international considerations and with issues of consumer protection will result in a bill that effectively curbs this bothersome and expensive practice," said Pheffer.

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