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Eagle Forum Capitol Alert
June 27, 2001


Notice: Deadline to respond is July 1, 2001.

You must respond to protect your privacy.

How to respond to "privacy policy" notices from banks and credit cards.

Most likely, you have been receiving customer "privacy policy" notices from your banks and credit card companies. Current federal law allows banks, credit card companies, insurance companies, investment firms and pension fund overseers to share your personal financial and credit information with other businesses. Many financial institutions will tell you that they are protecting your privacy and share it only within their family of businesses. However, this may include sharing your personal information with other credit cards companies that are affiliated, investment companies, brokerage and real estate firms, airline cards, and auto leasing companies. This is not privacy protection. The federal law provides that in order to protect your privacy you must "opt out" of the information sharing. To do this you must contact the bank, credit card company, etc., and ask to "opt out" of their information sharing.

How to "opt out" in order to protect your privacy.

  1. Buried inside the small print "privacy policy" notices from banks and credit card companies, there should be a phone number to call and ask to opt out. Call that number and tell them that you don't want them to share your personal information. In other words, "opt out." Or if you received a form, just mail it in to the credit card company or bank.

  2. You may have already thrown your "privacy policy" notice away with the junk mail. In that case, you can call the toll free customer service number on your credit card or your statement, push the option, usually "0" to speak to a real person and tell them you would like to "opt out of the information sharing." When they ask you "what part do you want to opt out of?" say "everything."

  3. You can also contact your bank or credit card company by mail. DO NOT include your request with your statement. Send it separately. Include in your request your name, address, phone number, and account numbers. Tell them that you want to "opt out of all information sharing."

    — Feel free to copy & distribute widely —

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