PA: Pileggi pushes for update to vague law on personal data theft

Melissa Daniels reports:

Back in 2007, the theft of several state computers jeopardized the personal information of as many as 400,000 Pennsylvanians.

Desktop computers from the Department of Public Welfare were taken from offices in Harrisburg and Philadelphia. Then, a laptop issued to the Department of Aging was stolen from a private residence.

There’s no telling what someone might do with stolen data. But state law says agencies must at least notify residents of the theft “without unreasonable delay.”

In these cases, it took up to three weeks for agencies to notify Pennsylvanians the breach had occurred. To Senate Majority Leader Dominic Pileggi, R-Delaware, that’s not fast enough.

Since 2008, Pileggi has introduced legislation that would require state and local agencies to notify residents of any data breach within a week.

The Senate unanimously passed some version of the bill in three separate sessions, most recently in 2011. But the House has never taken it up.

Read more on the Pennsylvania Independent.

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