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There are two serious loopholes in regulations. First, a financial institution that discovers a database breach must only notify account holders if it is "reasonably possible" that personal details will be misused. Second, regulations only apply to personal data, not business or commercial accounts.
While these new regulations are a positive step, one could drive a truck through two loopholes. Determining whether it is “reasonably possible” that your information will be misused is a vague standard that many financial institutions will use to withhold information. Put bluntly, notification regulations are gutless.
The best method for keeping an eye on database breaches is to look for stories in news. Under California law, companies are required to give notice to California residents when breaches occur. If you see a story about your bank giving notice of a hack to California residents, your personal information may have also been exposed. Hackers do not restrict their attacks to California residents.
Richard Chapo is an attorney with http://www.sandiegobusinesslawfirm.com - a law firm providing legal advice to California businesses. This article is for general education purposes and does not address every facet of the subject matter. Nothing in this article creates an attorney-client relationship.