National Consumers League

NCL statement on Commerce Committee markup of the Data Security and Breach Notification Act of 2015

April 15, 2015

Contact: NCL Communications, Carol McKay (412) 945-3242, carolm@nclnet.org

Washington, DC – Today, the House Energy & Commerce Committee approved HR 1770, the Data Security and Breach Notification Act of 2015. NCL had previously hoped that this bill would be improved in committee. Unfortunately, as today’s partisan vote made clear, that has not happened. The following statement is attributable to John Breyault, NCL Vice President, Public Policy, Telecommunications and Fraud:

At a time when millions of consumers are increasingly at risk of identity theft due to massive data breaches, it boggles the mind that Congress is contemplating reducing data security protections. Unfortunately, that is exactly what will happen if H.R. 1770, the Data Security and Breach Notification Act of 2015, becomes the law. The bill, which today passed out of committee on a party-line vote, would actually weaken existing consumer protections in 38 states. No major consumer groups are supporting this bill. Even Congressman Welch, who co-sponsored the bill, did not vote to move it to the floor.

Despite massive breaches at companies like Target, Home Depot, Anthem, Primera and countless others, it seems clear that the majority in Congress is intent on crafting a bill that weakens consumer protections by reducing or removing businesses’ data security obligations. Any Member of Congress who claims to be pro-consumer should oppose this bill in its current form. 

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About the National Consumers League

The National Consumers League, founded in 1899, is America's pioneer consumer organization. Our mission is to protect and promote social and economic justice for consumers and workers in the United States and abroad. For more information, visit www.nclnet.org.