Bush Signs Identity Theft Act

Legislatioin makes it easier to punish those caught breaking into systems and stealing personal information.

July 16, 2004

1 Min Read
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Bush Signs Identity Theft Act

While network security system vendors race to protect networks from an ever-growing list of threats, President Bush signed into law the Identity Theft Penalty Enhancement Act, which at least will make it easier to mete out stiff penalties to those caught breaking into systems and stealing personal information.According to President Bush, identity theft ensnared 10 million Americans last year"to the tune of $50 billion in fraudulent transactions.

The law establishes the new federal crime of "aggravated identity theft." Violators now can be charged with this crime, in addition to other crimes, such as mail fraud. Those convicted of aggravated identity theft face a mandatory two-year prison term.

The new law also will bring to bear the resources of the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, the FBI, and Secret Service, who will work in concert with local and state officials to disrupt and bring to justice criminal networks that are believed responsible for much of the identity theft in the country..

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