Privacy Advisor

White House ID Theft Task Force Issues Interim Recommendations

October 1, 2006

President Bush's Identity Theft Task Force has released its interim recommendations. Comprised of 17 federal agencies and departments, the nation's first-ever Identity Theft Task Force was created as a result of the President's May 10 Executive Order.

"The President created the Identity Theft Task Force to oversee the implementation of real and practical solutions at the federal level to defeat this ongoing intrusion into the lives of law-abiding Americans," said Attorney General Alberto Gonzales.

The final plan will be released in November.

The Task Force's Seven Interim Recommendations

   1. Directing the Office of Management and Budget to issue guidance to federal agencies on how to handle data breaches.
   2. Strengthening data security in the government.
   3. Accelerating and broadening the review of where Social Security numbers are used by agencies.
   4. Establishing a new "routine use" by which agencies would be allowed to share information otherwise restricted by the Privacy Act to facilitate responding to a data breach.
   5. Holding workshops for academics and businesses to develop better methods to authenticate identities.
   6. Amending criminal statutes to allow identity theft victims to seek restitution from defendants for time spent undoing damage from the offense.
   7. Developing a universal police report to make it  easier to report identity theft and enter it into  existing systems.