New Federal Database To Track American’s Financial Info, Credit Ratings
As much as 227 million Americans will be forced to disclose their most intimate financial details including their Social Security Numbers as a new national database is being built by two federal agencies.
The new D-Base is basically an expansion of the National Mortgage Database Program, a “joint venture” between the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and the Federal Housing Finance Agency and it will include all sorts of personal financial information that will make possible to identify actual users.
The newly created database will be managed by FHFA and the info will be shared with CFBP, which already monitors about 95% of all mortgage transactions in the United States.
The official explanation for the new D-Base is that it will make the monthly mortgage survey more accurate, as requested by the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008 and it will also contribute to the annual report that is presented to Congress.
However, there are many critical voices that question the need for such a vast and comprehensive data base with the sole purpose of reporting mortgages/financial transactions.
Besides privacy concerns, another problem arises, according to the critics: the “vulnerability” issue ; the new database would be a prime target for hackers, hence the most intimate financial information from millions of users would be put to risk. And last but not least, there’s the legitimacy issue : who gave the agency the authority to collect private financial data?
At its inception, the first database was promised to contain only aggregate information, that would not permit to identify users. But now, with the latest developments, the expansion means that the D-base will contains sensitive data such as the mortgage owner’s SSN, credit card data, home address, credit history, credit scores, racial and ethnic data, employment history, military status plus other financial information/account balances.
All these would make for an unprecedented collection of information about American taxpayers and according to security experts, the hacker threat is real and the Government will be incapable to protect the data.