2011 US Code
Title 15 - Commerce and Trade
Chapter 41 - CONSUMER CREDIT PROTECTION (§§ 1601 - 1693r)
Subchapter III - CREDIT REPORTING AGENCIES (§§ 1681 - 1681x)
Section 1681c-1 - Identity theft prevention; fraud alerts and active duty alerts

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Metadata

Publication TitleUnited States Code, 2006 Edition, Supplement 5, Title 15 - COMMERCE AND TRADE
CategoryBills and Statutes
CollectionUnited States Code
SuDoc Class NumberY 1.2/5:
Contained WithinTitle 15 - COMMERCE AND TRADE
CHAPTER 41 - CONSUMER CREDIT PROTECTION
SUBCHAPTER III - CREDIT REPORTING AGENCIES
Sec. 1681c-1 - Identity theft prevention; fraud alerts and active duty alerts
Containssection 1681c-1
Date2011
Laws in Effect as of DateJanuary 3, 2012
Positive LawNo
Dispositionstandard
Source CreditPub. L. 90-321, title VI, §605A, as added Pub. L. 108-159, title I, §112(a), Dec. 4, 2003, 117 Stat. 1955; amended Pub. L. 111-203, title X, §1088(a)(2)(C), July 21, 2010, 124 Stat. 2087.
Statutes at Large References117 Stat. 1955, 1959, 1964
124 Stat. 2087, 2092, 2107
Public Law ReferencesPublic Law 90-321, Public Law 108-159, Public Law 111-203

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15 USC § 1681c-1 (2011)

§1681c–1. Identity theft prevention; fraud alerts and active duty alerts

(a) One-call fraud alerts

(1) Initial alerts

Upon the direct request of a consumer, or an individual acting on behalf of or as a personal representative of a consumer, who asserts in good faith a suspicion that the consumer has been or is about to become a victim of fraud or related crime, including identity theft, a consumer reporting agency described in section 1681a(p) of this title that maintains a file on the consumer and has received appropriate proof of the identity of the requester shall—

(A) include a fraud alert in the file of that consumer, and also provide that alert along with any credit score generated in using that file, for a period of not less than 90 days, beginning on the date of such request, unless the consumer or such representative requests that such fraud alert be removed before the end of such period, and the agency has received appropriate proof of the identity of the requester for such purpose; and

(B) refer the information regarding the fraud alert under this paragraph to each of the other consumer reporting agencies described in section 1681a(p) of this title, in accordance with procedures developed under section 1681s(f) of this title.

(2) Access to free reports

In any case in which a consumer reporting agency includes a fraud alert in the file of a consumer pursuant to this subsection, the consumer reporting agency shall—

(A) disclose to the consumer that the consumer may request a free copy of the file of the consumer pursuant to section 1681j(d) of this title; and

(B) provide to the consumer all disclosures required to be made under section 1681g of this title, without charge to the consumer, not later than 3 business days after any request described in subparagraph (A).

(b) Extended alerts

(1) In general

Upon the direct request of a consumer, or an individual acting on behalf of or as a personal representative of a consumer, who submits an identity theft report to a consumer reporting agency described in section 1681a(p) of this title that maintains a file on the consumer, if the agency has received appropriate proof of the identity of the requester, the agency shall—

(A) include a fraud alert in the file of that consumer, and also provide that alert along with any credit score generated in using that file, during the 7-year period beginning on the date of such request, unless the consumer or such representative requests that such fraud alert be removed before the end of such period and the agency has received appropriate proof of the identity of the requester for such purpose;

(B) during the 5-year period beginning on the date of such request, exclude the consumer from any list of consumers prepared by the consumer reporting agency and provided to any third party to offer credit or insurance to the consumer as part of a transaction that was not initiated by the consumer, unless the consumer or such representative requests that such exclusion be rescinded before the end of such period; and

(C) refer the information regarding the extended fraud alert under this paragraph to each of the other consumer reporting agencies described in section 1681a(p) of this title, in accordance with procedures developed under section 1681s(f) of this title.

(2) Access to free reports

In any case in which a consumer reporting agency includes a fraud alert in the file of a consumer pursuant to this subsection, the consumer reporting agency shall—

(A) disclose to the consumer that the consumer may request 2 free copies of the file of the consumer pursuant to section 1681j(d) of this title during the 12-month period beginning on the date on which the fraud alert was included in the file; and

(B) provide to the consumer all disclosures required to be made under section 1681g of this title, without charge to the consumer, not later than 3 business days after any request described in subparagraph (A).

(c) Active duty alerts

Upon the direct request of an active duty military consumer, or an individual acting on behalf of or as a personal representative of an active duty military consumer, a consumer reporting agency described in section 1681a(p) of this title that maintains a file on the active duty military consumer and has received appropriate proof of the identity of the requester shall—

(1) include an active duty alert in the file of that active duty military consumer, and also provide that alert along with any credit score generated in using that file, during a period of not less than 12 months, or such longer period as the Bureau shall determine, by regulation, beginning on the date of the request, unless the active duty military consumer or such representative requests that such fraud alert be removed before the end of such period, and the agency has received appropriate proof of the identity of the requester for such purpose;

(2) during the 2-year period beginning on the date of such request, exclude the active duty military consumer from any list of consumers prepared by the consumer reporting agency and provided to any third party to offer credit or insurance to the consumer as part of a transaction that was not initiated by the consumer, unless the consumer requests that such exclusion be rescinded before the end of such period; and

(3) refer the information regarding the active duty alert to each of the other consumer reporting agencies described in section 1681a(p) of this title, in accordance with procedures developed under section 1681s(f) of this title.

(d) Procedures

Each consumer reporting agency described in section 1681a(p) of this title shall establish policies and procedures to comply with this section, including procedures that inform consumers of the availability of initial, extended, and active duty alerts and procedures that allow consumers and active duty military consumers to request initial, extended, or active duty alerts (as applicable) in a simple and easy manner, including by telephone.

(e) Referrals of alerts

Each consumer reporting agency described in section 1681a(p) of this title that receives a referral of a fraud alert or active duty alert from another consumer reporting agency pursuant to this section shall, as though the agency received the request from the consumer directly, follow the procedures required under—

(1) paragraphs (1)(A) and (2) of subsection (a) of this section, in the case of a referral under subsection (a)(1)(B) of this section;

(2) paragraphs (1)(A), (1)(B), and (2) of subsection (b) of this section, in the case of a referral under subsection (b)(1)(C) of this section; and

(3) paragraphs (1) and (2) of subsection (c) of this section, in the case of a referral under subsection (c)(3) of this section.

(f) Duty of reseller to reconvey alert

A reseller shall include in its report any fraud alert or active duty alert placed in the file of a consumer pursuant to this section by another consumer reporting agency.

(g) Duty of other consumer reporting agencies to provide contact information

If a consumer contacts any consumer reporting agency that is not described in section 1681a(p) of this title to communicate a suspicion that the consumer has been or is about to become a victim of fraud or related crime, including identity theft, the agency shall provide information to the consumer on how to contact the Bureau and the consumer reporting agencies described in section 1681a(p) of this title to obtain more detailed information and request alerts under this section.

(h) Limitations on use of information for credit extensions

(1) Requirements for initial and active duty alerts

(A) Notification

Each initial fraud alert and active duty alert under this section shall include information that notifies all prospective users of a consumer report on the consumer to which the alert relates that the consumer does not authorize the establishment of any new credit plan or extension of credit, other than under an open-end credit plan (as defined in section 1602(i) 1 of this title), in the name of the consumer, or issuance of an additional card on an existing credit account requested by a consumer, or any increase in credit limit on an existing credit account requested by a consumer, except in accordance with subparagraph (B).

(B) Limitation on users

(i) In general

No prospective user of a consumer report that includes an initial fraud alert or an active duty alert in accordance with this section may establish a new credit plan or extension of credit, other than under an open-end credit plan (as defined in section 1602(i) 1 of this title), in the name of the consumer, or issue an additional card on an existing credit account requested by a consumer, or grant any increase in credit limit on an existing credit account requested by a consumer, unless the user utilizes reasonable policies and procedures to form a reasonable belief that the user knows the identity of the person making the request.

(ii) Verification

If a consumer requesting the alert has specified a telephone number to be used for identity verification purposes, before authorizing any new credit plan or extension described in clause (i) in the name of such consumer, a user of such consumer report shall contact the consumer using that telephone number or take reasonable steps to verify the consumer's identity and confirm that the application for a new credit plan is not the result of identity theft.

(2) Requirements for extended alerts

(A) Notification

Each extended alert under this section shall include information that provides all prospective users of a consumer report relating to a consumer with—

(i) notification that the consumer does not authorize the establishment of any new credit plan or extension of credit described in clause (i), other than under an open-end credit plan (as defined in section 1602(i) 1 of this title), in the name of the consumer, or issuance of an additional card on an existing credit account requested by a consumer, or any increase in credit limit on an existing credit account requested by a consumer, except in accordance with subparagraph (B); and

(ii) a telephone number or other reasonable contact method designated by the consumer.

(B) Limitation on users

No prospective user of a consumer report or of a credit score generated using the information in the file of a consumer that includes an extended fraud alert in accordance with this section may establish a new credit plan or extension of credit, other than under an open-end credit plan (as defined in section 1602(i) 1 of this title), in the name of the consumer, or issue an additional card on an existing credit account requested by a consumer, or any increase in credit limit on an existing credit account requested by a consumer, unless the user contacts the consumer in person or using the contact method described in subparagraph (A)(ii) to confirm that the application for a new credit plan or increase in credit limit, or request for an additional card is not the result of identity theft.

(Pub. L. 90–321, title VI, §605A, as added Pub. L. 108–159, title I, §112(a), Dec. 4, 2003, 117 Stat. 1955; amended Pub. L. 111–203, title X, §1088(a)(2)(C), July 21, 2010, 124 Stat. 2087.)

References in Text

Section 1602(i) of this title, referred to in subsec. (h), was redesignated section 1602(j) of this title by Pub. L. 111–203, title X, §1100A(1)(A), July 21, 2010, 124 Stat. 2107.

Amendments

2010—Subsecs. (c)(1), (g). Pub. L. 111–203 substituted “the Bureau” for “the Commission”.

Effective Date of 2010 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 111–203 effective on the designated transfer date, see section 1100H of Pub. L. 111–203, set out as a note under section 552a of Title 5, Government Organization and Employees.

Effective Date

Section subject to joint regulations establishing effective dates as prescribed by Federal Reserve Board and Federal Trade Commission, except as otherwise provided, see section 3 of Pub. L. 108–159, set out as an Effective Date of 2003 Amendment note under section 1681 of this title.

Regulations

Pub. L. 108–159, title I, §112(b), Dec. 4, 2003, 117 Stat. 1959, as amended by Pub. L. 111–203, title X, §1088(b)(1), July 21, 2010, 124 Stat. 2092, provided that: “The Bureau shall prescribe regulations to define what constitutes appropriate proof of identity for purposes of sections 605A , 605B, and 609(a)(1) of the Fair Credit Reporting Act [15 U.S.C. 1681c–1, 1681c–2, 1681g(a)(1)], as amended by this Act.”

Public Campaign To Prevent Identity Theft

Pub. L. 108–159, title I, §151(b), Dec. 4, 2003, 117 Stat. 1964, provided that: “Not later than 2 years after the date of enactment of this Act [Dec. 4, 2003], the Commission shall establish and implement a media and distribution campaign to teach the public how to prevent identity theft. Such campaign shall include existing Commission education materials, as well as radio, television, and print public service announcements, video cassettes, interactive digital video discs (DVD's) or compact audio discs (CD's), and Internet resources.”

[For definitions of terms used in section 151(b) of Pub. L. 108–159, set out above, see section 2 of Pub. L. 108–159, set out as a Definitions note under section 1681 of this title.]

1 See References in Text note below.

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