The primary purpose of FACTA (the Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act) is to reduce the risk of identity theft by regulating how consumer account information (such as Social Security numbers) is handled. FACTA is enforced by multiple agencies and government administrations, as well as the FTC.

Some FACTA requirements:

  1. Red Flag Rules: Under the red flag rules financial institutions and creditors are required to create and implement a written Identity Theft Prevention Program to help detect and prevent identity theft.
  2. Free Credit reports: FACTA also allows consumers to get one free credit report every twelve months from any of the three dedicated, nationwide consumer credit reporting companies. Allowing consumer to check their credit history gives individuals more control over their own information. One source to obtain a free credit report: www.creditkarma.com
  3. Alerts & Monitoring: FACTA allows consumers to take more control over their own information by creating systems so they can set up personal alerts on their credit histories. Allowing individuals to monitor their own information will help identify data risks early on, and reduces the dependency on large companies to disclose breaches.
  4. Proper Disposal of Sensitive Information: Lastly, FACTA requires creditors and financial institutions to take “reasonable measures to protect against unauthorized access to or use of consumer information” with proper disposal. To ensure private information is not compromised, FACTA requires that reasonable steps be taken to destroy private information beyond a doubt before it leaves the hands of any financial institution.  AAA-Naid certified document destruction companies can be trusted to properly dispose of confidential information.

(Source: https://www.acc.com/legalresources/quickcounsel/tfaacta.cfm)

FACTA applies to consumer reporting agencies that compile credit related information on consumers that is used in credit reports.

The bottom line: What ensures that your information as a consumer is kept secure? FACTA