FTC: Consumer Privacy Comments Concerning Badger State Detective Agency--P974806
Badger State Detective Agency
Established in 1985 - Serving all of Wisconsin Process Serving - Investigations and Locksmith Services Tipping the scales in your favor with superior knowledge
Member: Professional Association of
Wisconsin licensed investigators
Jun 26, 1997
Secretary,Federal Trade Commission
RE: Support of Self Regulation
Dear Mr Secretary:
In response to the Commissions request for additional comments following the hearing held June 10, 1997, I as a licensed private investigator, process server and information provider and a regular user of pubic and non-public records (such as credit headers, driver records and licenses). I support the proposition of self regulation, which will assist my clients, most of whom are attorneys, Federal and state government agencies and other private investigators, who also are interested in supporting the proposition of self regulation to keep avenues of information open to them.
The data that we regularly access and use, in our reports to clients, has a beneficial use and need in society. It is important that a free flow of information be available to support commerce and our judicial system and many private citizens who are attempting to find siblings, former friends, adoptees and other legitimate purposes and lawful purposes. It also allows the public, who does not have the resources to manage all the problems they are faced with defending themselves without looking to government for help. Further regulation would create additional barriers to us that today save lives, prevent fraud, administer justice and reunite families.
We are required to keep the information confidential and maintain a high degree of accuracy in our reports due to law, courts and market place, which would be eroded by the lack of this information. To have the targets of our investigations able to browse around in our inquiries and data, or opt out of the databases that are private and public would be the death of our industry and freedom and many previous offenders and wrongdoers would not be found out and justice could not be served. The prevention of wrong doing and protection of fraud are real test of the use of data.
Privacy protection can be manage through our industries self regulation for uses and distribution of that information. Our industry had stated a willingness and desire to self regulate. This industry must have the opportunity to self regulate and welcomes the governments help in enforcing the rules through the industries efforts.
One example is that of having a method of determining the correct subject of an investigation. Use of social security numbers, drivers license numbers, dates of birth and addresses, is used to ascertain that the records, thus found, are that of the proper subject. Without these pieces of information, how would a person be able to determine, from a list of several thousand SMITHs or JONES in a database or record, is the correct subject. Inaccurate reports would thus abound due a linking of the wrong subject to a offense or accident report.
Another example is think of the times you have called a state or government office. The first question usually is that of name, date or birth or social security number so that that government office can ascertain the individual record pulled by the government agency is that of the correct subject. Think of IRS trying to determine which checking or savings account is that of a non-payer of income tax without the social security number.
I ask that you support self regulation and work with the industry to successfully bring about policies and procedure that we can all live with in a free society.
Very truly yours,
G. M. Wise
GARY M. WISE
PROCESS SERVING - INVESTIGATIONS - LOCKSMITH SERVICES
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