WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senators Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.), Rick Scott (R-Fla.), Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), Deb Fischer (R-Neb.), Tom Cotton (R-Ark.), and Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.) today introduced the Identity Theft Victims Protection Act to support victims of identity theft and help them recover quicker. This legislation will hold identity thieves accountable by adding the fraudulent actions to the perpetrator’s credit history, instead of the innocent victim’s credit history.
“Recovering from identity theft can take years, and for families across America, it’s a crime few can afford,” Senator Capito said. “The Identity Theft Victims Protection Act works to help victims recover and better hold criminals accountable. Victims shouldn’t be carrying this crime through their credit history. This bill puts a scarlet letter on identity thieves and helps victims move on.”
“Identity theft is a real issue that takes a serious emotional and financial toll on families across our nation. Too often, victims of identity theft are left dealing with the effects on their credit history years after the crime. The Identity Theft Victims Protection Act holds identity thieves accountable by removing fraudulent transactions from an innocent victim’s credit history, and transferring it to the criminal’s history instead. This common-sense legislation will improve the lives of so many Americans who have spent weeks, months, and even years, seeking relief after the crime,” Senator Scott said.
“Unfortunately, I am all too aware of how common the problem of identity theft is, especially in Florida. Fraudsters have traditionally targeted Florida’s senior citizens, and it is time for Congress to support victims of identity theft and hold thieves accountable for preying on our nation’s most vulnerable,” Senator Rubio said.
“Last year, there were nearly 1,300 cases of identity theft in Nebraska, and sorting out the mess victims are left with is a long and frustrating process,” Senator Fischer said. “They shouldn’t have to suffer the added burden of dealing with a bad credit score as a result of the theft. By making it easier to correct a victim’s credit history following an identity theft conviction, the Identity Theft Victims Protection Act would enhance public safety and protect the thousands of Americans whose identities are stolen every year.”
“Arkansans who fall victim to identity theft often spend years trying to pick-up the pieces and restore their good credit. This bill would provide much-needed relief to victims by putting the burden back on those who commit these crimes,” Senator Cotton said.
“Identity theft crimes should be catalogued as part of a perpetrator’s credit history – not that of an innocent victim. After the frustration and devastation of having one’s identity stolen, victims deserve some relief,” Senator Blackburn said.
Under the Identity Theft Victims Protection Act, following a submission of appropriate proof of a conviction for identity theft or aggravated identity theft, a consumer reporting agency would:
Remove any information in the victim’s credit history report confirmed to be the result of identity theft;
Add the removed information to the credit history report of the criminal found guilty of identity theft; and
Notify all other consumer reporting agencies to enable them to take the same action to hold the victim harmless and accurately report the fraudulent transaction in the criminal’s credit history report.