|Sent: Monday, March 13, 2000 12:26
RE: Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act Privacy Rule, 16 CFR Part 313 -Comment
TO WHOM IT MAY CONCERN:
I am writing to express my concern with the proposed regulations to implement Title V of the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act of 1999. As an information provider and small business person, we would lose a valuable and very necessary source of backgrounding job applicants if "non-public personal information" is defined to include simple names and addresses of customers of financial institutions.
It was my impression that the clear intent of Congress was to provide an opportunity for customers of financial institutions to "opt-out" of sharing their personal financial information with non-affiliates of the institutions. The statute provides protection for financial information--not mere names and addresses. If all information available to a financial institution is defined as "non-public personal information," then what is "public"? Congress seemed to be offering a distinction by describing financial information. I believe the Act provides opt-out of information regarding credit history, employment and financial assets. But name, address and phone number should not be classified as "non-public."
The information obtain by information providers regarding addresses and phone numbers is essential to conducting our business and fulfilling our obligations to consumers. We utilize this information to perform background checks and pre-employment screenings among other things. Since 30% of all job applicants lie on their employment applications, it is imperative to be able to discover their present and previous addresses in order to perform due diligence for the employer.
If this information is deemed "non-public personal," only wrongdoers and criminals will benefit and the law-abiding consumer will be the loser. I urge you to define non-public personal information in the manner that Congress intended.