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PIA Insurance Technology Coalition Examines the Data Security/Identity Theft Issue on Capitol Hill

WASHINGTON, July 20, 2005 - Participants attending a special meeting of the PIA Insurance Technology Coalition (ITC) on Capitol Hill in Washington D.C. July 19...
July 20, 2005

Congressional Staffers, Experts Predict Legislation Will Be Passed This Year

WASHINGTON, July 20, 2005 - Participants attending a special meeting of the PIA Insurance Technology Coalition (ITC) on Capitol Hill in Washington D.C. July 19 heard presentations from key players in the Congressional debate over data security /identity theft and discussed its potential effect on all segments of our industry.

According to key Congressional staffers and other legislative experts, there is a strong likelihood that legislation will be passed in Congress this year. The key question is what kind of effect and cost burden it will have on the insurance industry.

To date, at least eight Congressional committees have offered bills and high-profile members of Congress, such as Sens. Charles Schumer (D-New York), Arlen Specter (R-Pennsylvania), Patrick Leahy (D-Vermont) and Dianne Feinstein (D-California), are not only weighing in with legislation but offering public statements about the need for federal action.

"While the ITC is positioned to respond to a variety of technology issues affecting insurance, the data security/ identity theft issue is a perfect example of why PIA has created this group with broad-based insurance industry participation," said PIA National Executive Vice President & CEO Len Brevik. "There are a variety of proposals currently 'in play' on Capitol Hill and our industry needs to be better informed about them - anticipating their effect -- not just responding after legislation is passed and it's too late."

The PIA Insurance Technology Coalition provides education and information to Congress with regard to laws and regulations affecting the insurance industry and technology.

The special half-day PIA Insurance Technology Coalition meeting was held in the Russell Senate Office Building on Capitol Hill. Speakers included Scott Sinder of the law firm of Collier, Shannon & Scott; Paul Martino, former staff member for Sen. John McCain (R-Arizona), who recently joined Alston & Bird as a Counsel in the firm's legislative and public policy group; and Dean Sagar, senior policy analyst for the Minority Staff of the House Financial Services Committee.

Meeting participants included Ray L. Peretti, national President-elect of the PIA, PIA agent members, PIA policy staff and representatives from ACORD, AIG Agency Auto, AMS Services, IVANS, MetLife Auto & Home, Ohio Casualty Insurance, Rough Notes Magazine, Safeway Insurance Company and The Automated Agency Report.

Founded in 1931, PIA is a national trade association that represents member insurance agents and their employees who sell and service all kinds of insurance, but specialize in coverage of automobiles, homes and businesses. PIA will celebrate its 75th anniversary in 2006.