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Blumenthal Announces Legislation on Data Privacy

(West Hartford, CT) –Senator Richard Blumenthal today held a roundtable discussion with data breach experts and community leaders at the Information Technology Center at the University of Connecticut Greater Hartford campus to discuss legislation he will introduce in the coming weeks that will take a multi-pronged approach to combating the risks associated with data breaches for both consumers and businesses. Blumenthal was joined by consumer advocates including members of the Connecticut Public Interest Research Group (ConnPIRG), Mike Fischer, a computer science professor at Yale University, and members of the Connecticut Citizens Action Group. 

In 2011 alone, nearly 23 million cases of data breaches involving personally identifiable information were reported.  Blumenthal’s bill will discuss ways to combat the growing problem of data breaches involving personal information including notifying consumers immediately when a breach occurs and ensuring appropriate safeguards are in place to both deter and prevent future breaches, ensuring consumers can enjoy and utilize the benefits of the internet without the fear of identity theft.

“To both prevent and remedy breaches, systems must be better protected, and when breaches do occur, consumer notification must be mandated at the federal level. In an information age filled with enormous peril as well as promise people can be exposed to untold and unacceptable financial loss, privacy invasion, and personal danger if their own information falls into the wrong hands,” said Blumenthal. “The staggering increase of data breaches in the past year compromising personal and financial information warrants a swift and comprehensive federal response to hold companies accountable. As technology changes, so must our laws and regulations. I look forward to continuing to work with the Judiciary Committee to make sure consumers are able to enjoy the benefits of the internet without the threat of identity theft.”

Blumenthal is a member of the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Privacy, Technology, and the Law and has been an outspoken advocate for enhanced consumer protections against data breach incidents and corporate accountability following major data breach incidents this past spring.