Senators Worried About Abuses Of Student Loan Personal Info

from the secure-like-a-sieve dept

Students who borrow money to pay for school are no strangers to junk mail and telemarketing calls from loan companies. Now, some senators are concerned that the companies are getting their marketing and contact information from a government database of borrowers to which they shouldn’t have access. Borrowers’ records in the database are only supposed to be accessed by companies that have their permission, or that have a financial relationship with them, but the amount of solicitations and marketing materials many students receive from a wide array of companies makes it fairly obvious that this isn’t the case. This story comes amid a wider scandal in the student-loan industry, with officials from several schools accused of receiving kickbacks from loan companies, and allegations of lax oversight from a government department stacked with ex-employees from the companies they’re supposed to be watching over. But the security hole is also representative of the government’s lack of interest in protecting personal data. If federal and state governments can’t be bothered to secure the information, it’s probably unreasonable to expect them to do anything to make sure the private sector takes security seriously either.


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Comments on “Senators Worried About Abuses Of Student Loan Personal Info”

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8 Comments
Fred Flint says:

What Did you Expect?

I don’t think the point here is that the State and Federal governments can’t be bothered to secure personal data.

I think the point is that personal data has a high monetary value and we’re living in a capitalist world where “greed, for lack of a better word… is good”.

The U.S. is slowly selling itself to its’ enemies, mostly via the national debt.

If the government is willing to do this, how do you figure government staff aren’t going to pick up on it and grab a piece of the pie for themselves?

You never know says:

Go figure. Telemarketers pay through the nose for potential customer lists, and anyone who has access to the data can sell a copy that is then circulated around so fast no one could possibly track it back to the source. As long as peoples private information is so wholesale available to anyone who makes a claim they have a right to it this issue will never go away. Unless some one of political power gets dinged there is little incentive for the government to do anything about it. The only thing we as the potential victims are going to be able to do is to educate ourselves and take diligent action to protect our information, including doing with out the fancy loan.

Dam says:

Re: Re:

Not entirely true. If purchased from a legit source, names are “rented” and cannot be resold. Any list marketer with an ounce of brains “salts” the list with a number of names that will report abuse of the list if they receive a call or piece of mail that was not allowed.

Unlike spammers who often pass around tons of email lists (because they’re all scum) prospect lists are fairly controlled.

Overcast says:

Yeah, I’ll agree – there are most certainly problems with the student loan system, it sucks big time now.

And, perhaps that does a LOT to explain why I get junk mail and crap, as I never really use my real address for most things. Sorry, if there’s not a legit reason for a company to have my real address, they don’t get it.

Astrid says:

Did you know that Sallie Mae employees are in Indi

What about the fact that Sallie Mae CS reps are located in India? How secure is my private information? I’m paying back my student loan and when I have to call the toll free number, every time now I’m talking to someone in India. What really pissed me off is that they refuse to admit where they are, even though Sallie Mae is a quasi-government agency, and this involves taxpayer money. If they were in Idaho, the CSR would say yeah we’re in Boise, it’s ten below zero today. How’s the weather in SF? Instead, I’m told ‘Ma’am, I’m not allowed to tell you what country I’m in.’

Shouldn’t an American be employed if this is American taxpayer dollars at work?

Anonymous Coward says:

As we all know, nearly almost plastic products around you was made through plastic injection molding – the mouse you are using to click, the PET containers you use to store water or food, and also China printing can help us made the labels to attract potential customers and steel and aluminum made scaffolding made for the purpose of construction and renovation works.

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