Sent: Thursday, August 02, 2001 3:33 PM
Subject: Financial Data
To whom it may concern:
My name is Lou Larsen and I am a consultant to the Direct Marketing order fulfillment industry. I have been involved in various areas of Direct Marketing for more than 30 years. My personal and professional feeling on this matter is that financial data should be off limits to any marketing efforts. Even internal marketing departments within the financial organization that owns the data should not have access. Personal financial information is just that "personal" and should only be available to the financial organization on a need to know basis. It should not be readily available or saleable for marketing purposes. I currently make personal financial investment decisions based upon the bank or broker's privacy policies and will hold them responsible for any breach of their stated rules.
There is an abundance of purchase pattern data available without delving into financials. I also believe that disclosing personal financial data would exploit those individuals who respond to every offer that is presented to them due to a diminished mental condition or other handicap and consequently have many debt obligations. On the surface the most obvious application would be to market to individuals with a solid financial status but who's to stop the unscrupulous marketer from exploiting vulnerable people that cannot afford it.