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Bill to fight ID theft passes

Published February 17, 2012 11:59 am

This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2012, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

HB19 • The Senate gave final passage Friday to a bill designed to help prevent ID theft.

It voted unanimously to pass HB19 by Rep. Wayne Harper, R-West Jordan, and sent it to Gov. Gary Herbert for his signature

Harper says HB19 was sparked by stories in The Salt Lake Tribune revealing the Utah Department of Health's decades-long practice of handing out nine-digit ID numbers to Baby Your Baby applicants who claimed not to have Social Security numbers.

Often, the numbers were issued to undocumented immigrants who aren't eligible for the federally funded prenatal care program — and some of those numbers belonged to Social Security cardholders in the Northeast, The Tribune found.

The bill would require state agencies that have issued nine-digit ID numbers who are capable of easily switching away from that to do so. Others could wait for a major upgrade to their computer systems, replace numbers with letters or take steps to ensure that the digits they use don't conflict with real Social Security numbers.

Lee Davidson