April 8, 2005- Citibank Call Center Privacy Breach a "Wake-up Call" for Consumers

WASHINGTON, DC-- Representative Edward Markey (D-MA), co-chair of the Congressional Privacy Caucus, made the following statement in response to reports that employees of an Indian Citibank call center misused financial data to steal $350,000 from customers.

“This call center incident should be a wake-up call for consumers, what happened to Citibank could happen to any bank, tax organizer or hospital.

We cannot let our private information be carelessly outsourced to places where this data can be easily stolen or abused. Citibank and other companies are sending Americans’ most private information: tax records, health data, and financial information into the
hands of strangers without notifying consumers. These companies are not stepping up to the task of protecting Americans’ privacy. Next week, I will release legislation that restores protection for consumers’ privacy and prevents personal data from being handed over to places where low wages are more important that consumer protections.”

For more information on Rep. Markey’s legislation to protect consumer privacy check out: http://www.house.gov/markey/

April 8, 2005
 CONTACT: Tara McGuinness
Jeff Duncan