FTC Hosts Identity Theft Conference

On May 24, 2017, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) hosted a day-long conference titled “Identity Theft: Planning for the Future.” The goal for the day was to take a comprehensive look at how identity theft has evolved over the last decade and what we can do collectively to address this challenge in the future. Medical ID theft was discussed along with the many other forms the crime of identity theft takes. The FTC has provided several post-conference resources including videos of the full day’s proceedings.

To visit the webpage devoted to the archived conference, click here.

Key resources made available include:

  • The Conference agenda
  • A list of Conference speakers and their bios
  • Conference materials including presentation slides and FTC research on the tracking of leaked consumer data
  • Recorded videos of the full day (in three parts)

NHCAA staff participated in the Conference. While the event did not exclusively focus on medical ID theft, it was discussed several times throughout the day. The Medical Identity Fraud Alliance (MIFA) sat on one of the conference panels and offered the perspective that regulatory requirements specific to health and medical can present additional challenges compared to other areas affected by identity theft. It was also noted that a disparity often exists between the resources available to prevent medical ID theft. One panelist explained that an individual doctor is not typically going to have the resources that a hospital or health system might have to put in place state-of-the-art information security measures, for instance.

The afternoon panel devoted to examining the victim’s perspective was insightful and is worth watching.  

In offering opening remarks, Maureen K. Ohlhausen Acting Chairman of the FT laid out three calls to action:

  1. More research (The FTC is committed to deepening the FTC’s understanding of the harms of information disclosure and ID theft; Ms. Ohlhausen also calls on academics, consumer advocates, etc. to do more research in the ID theft space as well).
  2. A call for more cooperation and coordination across the federal government and state governments. The FTC is ready to take the lead and is anxious to work with other agencies.
  3. A call for more private-public partnerships.