McGuinty Government Seeks Public Input On How To Best Prevent Identity Theft

Archived Release

McGuinty Government Seeks Public Input On How To Best Prevent Identity Theft

Ministry of Consumer Services

Discussion Paper Now Available For Public Consultation TORONTO, July 6 - The McGuinty government is asking for public input on ways to prevent identity theft, Government Services Minister Gerry Phillips announced today. "Identity theft is one of the fastest-growing crimes in North America," said Phillips. "We want to hear from the public about ways we can help keep their identity safe and ways we can restore their identity should they become a victim." Working Together to Prevent Identity Theft: A Discussion Paper for Public Consultation is an initiative of the Consumer Measures Committee. The committee is made up of representatives from the federal, provincial and territorial governments and provides a forum to improve the marketplace for Canadian consumers. The consultation paper explores options to amend federal, provincial and territorial laws and asks for feedback on the following practices: - Truncating, or partially blanking out, payment card numbers on any electronic sales receipt - Verifying the identity of persons and organizations accessing credit reports - Removing social insurance numbers on credit reports or preventing their use as a unique identifier for consumers - Requiring organizations that store personal information to notify individuals and credit bureaus in cases of security breaches - Requiring credit lenders to disclose details of fraudulent debts to victims. Identity theft is the use of someone else's personal information, without his or her knowledge or consent, to commit a crime, such as fraud, theft or forgery. A recent survey indicated that approximately three per cent of Canadians were victims of identity theft in 2003. Consultations begin July 6 and conclude September 15, 2005. Governments across the country will closely review input to make recommendations on possible legislative reforms to help curtail identity theft. The consultation papers are available online at www.cmcweb.ca/idtheft. The public and key stakeholders are asked to submit their comments by fax, mail or e-mail to: Consumer Measures Committee c/o Office of Consumer Affairs Industry Canada 235 Queen Street Ottawa ON K1A 0H5 Fax: 613-952-6927 E-mail: info@cmcweb.ca Disponible en fran├žais www.cbs.gov.on.caFor further information: Joe Vaccaro, Minister's Office, (416) 327-3072; Julie Rosenberg, Ministry of Government Services, (416) 326-8558