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Oppose HR 2971 send to your congresspersons

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  • Bernard Cane
    Feel free to use this sample letter - cut and paste away. Bernard Cane, CIP 310-260-7666 The House Ways and Means Committee unanimously approved the Social
    Message 1 of 1 , Sep 3, 2004
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      Feel free to use this sample letter - cut and paste away. Bernard Cane, CIP

      The House Ways and Means Committee unanimously approved the Social Security
      Number Privacy and Identity Theft Prevention Act of 2004 just one week after
      it was forwarded by the House subcommittee on Social Security. According to
      U.S. Rep. E. Clay Shaw Jr. (R-FL), his bill provides a way to fight both
      identity theft and terrorism. HR 2971 now goes to two other House
      committees: Energy & Commerce and Financial Services. Ways and Means asked
      both groups to bring the bill to vote quickly.

      As a licensed private investigator and a security professional, I disagree
      with Shaw's claims. While supporting the bill's objectives, the bill in its
      present form is flawed and seriously problematic because it would hinder
      efforts to locate witnesses, debtors, heirs, deadbeat parents, tax cheats,
      scofflaws, charlatans, missing persons, runaway children, fugitives, and
      criminals, and even find potential organ or bone marrow donors. Attorneys
      rely on private investigators for all of the aforementioned purposes and
      more. Attorneys are concerned that the bill, if passed, will make
      witnesses, defendants, and wrongdoers virtually impossible to find or bring
      to justice. If the bill passes, criminal defense attorneys will not be able
      to give their clients a fair defense, and civil litigation attorneys will be
      unable give their clients a fighting chance to win or defend their cases!!

      The credit header data is a vital and needed source for running the judicial
      system from small claims actions to Sherman Anti-trust actions. By
      eliminating credit headers and limiting SSN for identifying witnesses and
      parties to litigation, it will be more unfairly burdensome and cost
      prohibitive for 98% of the population to obtain a fair trial and a chance
      for justice.

      Surely this was not the intention of the author of this bill. Please do not
      sit back on your laurels and allow this travesty of justice to prevail.

      It is already very difficult to obtain current address information needed to
      defend the rights of our clients. Supporters of the legislation acknowledge
      these possibilities and claim most information will still be available to
      those looking for it if they have a legitimate "permissible purpose" under
      the Fair Credit Reporting Act. THIS IS NOT TRUE! THEY ARE EITHER LYING OR
      purposes include things such as consideration for employment, issuance of
      credit, or debt collection, but nothing of what I spoke about above!

      Moreover, HR 2971 would prohibit the sale and public display of Social
      Security numbers, put new limits on the dissemination of SSNs, and make it
      harder for businesses to deny services to customers who refuse to provide
      their numbers. The bill's restrictions would apply to federal, state and
      local governments, as well as those in the private sector. Prosecutors and
      police are exempted. The bill would enforce its provisions with stiff new
      criminal penalties on those that unlawfully buy, sell, or misuse a Social
      Security number.

      SSNs are one of the non-law enforcement ways of identifying individual from
      individual in this country. The SSN is a VITAL means of identification,
      which cannot just arbitrarily be denied. If you want to stop identity
      theft, then get law enforcement to act more proactively when a victim
      reports an incident. Law enforcement cannot do the job, will not do the
      job, and by the time the police detectives are involved, the damage is
      already done. Increase the penalties for those who use the SSN in the
      commission of a crime, but don't take the charge out of the battery. We
      need access to the SSN to identify the bad guys. We do not have the NCIC
      database of fingerprints to aid us in out legitimate quest to find the bad
      guy or the witness.

      As currently drafted, the bill would deny a cost-effective means to fight
      crime and protect consumer rights. The bill adversely impacts the ability of
      finding witnesses, lost children, deadbeat parents, heirs, etc., by
      restricting the private sector's ability to access the tools needed to
      locate them. I oppose HR 2971 and we hope you will as well.

      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
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