Privacy: Government Use of Data from Information Resellers Could Include Better Protections
Federal agencies collect and use personal information for various purposes from information resellers--companies that amass and sell data from many sources. GAO was asked to testify on its April 2006 report on agency use of reseller data. For that report, GAO was asked to determine how the Departments of Justice, Homeland Security, and State and the Social Security Administration used personal data from resellers and to review the extent to which agencies' policies and practices for handling this information reflected the Fair Information Practices, a set of widely accepted principles for protecting the privacy and security of personal data. GAO was also asked to provide an update on the implementation status of its recommendations and to comment on provisions of the proposed Federal Agency Data Protection Act. In preparing this testimony, GAO relied primarily on its April 2006 report.