News release

Nova Scotians Invited to Comment on Identity Theft

From credit card accounts to home addresses and phone numbers, these days almost all Canadians can find their personal information stored on dozens of computer databases. Nova Scotians have good reason, then, to participate in a national consultation on how best to protect that information and prevent identity theft, says Barry Barnet, Minister of Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations.

Identity theft is Canada's fastest-growing economic crime. Nearly one in every 10 Canadians is affected when someone else uses personal information, without their knowledge or consent, to commit crimes like fraud, theft and forgery. Victims can be left with poor credit ratings and substantial financial losses.

Mr. Barnet has joined colleagues responsible for consumer affairs departments across the country in releasing a discussion paper that takes aim at the issue. Entitled Working Together to Prevent Identity Theft, the paper defines identity theft, provides examples, explores legal reforms, identifies questions for readers to consider and provides readers with an opportunity to comment. It is intended to help find ways of curbing identity theft and of making it easier for victims to recover from their experiences.

"Many Nova Scotians are victims of identity theft at some point in their lives," said the minister. "I'd like to encourage all Nova Scotians to take the time and participate in this investigation. The more people who participate, the better grasp we will have of the problem and the solutions required to fix it."

The consultation paper and information on how to submit feedback is available online at www.cmcweb.ca . Copies of the paper can also be sent by mail by calling toll-free 1-800-670-4357. Comments will be accepted electronically, by fax or mail until Sept. 15.

FOR BROADCAST USE:

Identity theft is Canada's fastest-growing economic crime; nearly one in 10 Canadians has been affected by it at some point in their lives.

To help get a better grasp on identity theft and the solutions required to prevent it, Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations Minister Barry Barnet has joined his counterparts from across the country in releasing a discussion paper entitled "Working Together to Prevent Identity Theft."

The consultation paper and information on how to submit feedback is available online at W-W-W dot C-M-C-WEB dot C-A. Copies of the paper can also be sent by mail by calling toll-free 1-800-670-4357.

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Contact:

Lenore Bromley
Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations 902-424-2733 E-mail: