Why is privacy an important issue in the information age? Financial companies share information for many reasons: to offer you more services, to introduce new products and to profit from the information they have about you. In fact, you've probably been receiving privacy notices from banks and other financial companies. These notices explain 1) What personal financial information the company collects; 2) Whether the company intends to share your personal financial information with other companies; 3) What you can do if the company intends to share your personal financial information, to limit to some of that sharing; and 4) How the company protects your personal financial information.
Why is information privacy a sensitive issue?
- Information is a very valuable resource!
- Access to information in our society today offers many benefits to consumers, but also poses a potential threat to our privacy.
What types of information is available?
- Demographic information (U.S. Census)
- Telephone directories
- Birth, marriage, and divorce records
- Voter registration records
- Campaign contributions
- Driver's licenses/vehicle registrations
- Licenses and permits (hunting, fishing, etc.)
- Legal information (judgments, bankruptcies, real estate titles, etc.)
Private Databases for legitimate purposes only:
- Employment information
- Credit reports
- Tax information (IRS/state tax boards)
- Criminal records
- Social service records (welfare, Medicaid, etc.)
- School records
- Medical records
- Amending/correcting records
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