Sinema Calls for Solutions to Protect Arizonans’ Privacy, Touts New Law Protecting AZ Kids from Identity Theft

May 7, 2019

WASHINGTON – Arizona senior Senator Kyrsten Sinema today spoke at the Senate Banking Committee hearing on data privacy. Sinema called attention to the need to ensure that financial technology is secure and protects Arizonans’ privacy rights.
“Arizonans value our privacy. I’m committed to finding a thoughtful solution — one that protects fundamental privacy rights while ensuring continued access to the financial technology that makes life easier and better for Arizona families,” said Sinema.
Sinema illustrated the stakes in getting data privacy right by sharing the story of Jill Carlon. Jill is a Peoria mom whose daughter’s identity was stolen in 2011 through a type of financial crime known as synthetic identity theft. Synthetic identity theft primarily targets children and other people who have little or no credit history. The crime becomes more likely when there are large scale data breaches involving Social Security number. To make matters worse, Jill had tried to get her daughter a new Social Security number for over six years, but their case was caught in red tape at the Social Security Administration.
After hearing Jill’s story, Sinema led the passage of the Protecting Children from Identity Theft Act in the U.S. House. Her bipartisan legislation was signed into law last May, and implementation is now underway. The Protecting Children from Identity Theft Act strengthens the Social Security Administration’s ID verification regime by modernizing it so it can be used for everyday financial transactions, a key way to check against synthetic identity theft.
Sinema also sent a letter to the Social Security Administration to push for resolution in Jill’s case, urging them to issue Jill’s daughter a new number and give their family a much-needed fresh start. Sinema subsequently received confirmation that Jill’s daughter received a new number and implemented new internal changes to more effectively respond to synthetic identity theft cases.