State Representative Paul Graves (R-Fall City) has thrown his name into the group of legislators who are writing bills calling for free credit freezes.
Rep. Graves saw the Equifax breach which exposed the information of 145-million people and did something about it.
He called the incident an incredible injustice.
“Both to have the data breach itself, then to try to charge customers to fix it when it was really Equifax’s problem,” said Rep. Graves.
Under Rep. Graves’ proposed bill, everyone would get one free credit freeze a year. Victims of data breaches and identity theft victims would get three a year. And companies who had the information compromised would have to pay for the freezes.
“Most companies in my experience do the right thing when they make mistakes. They admit to it, they communicate with their customers about it, and they bear the cost for it,” said Rep. Graves.
Since I jumped on the case, legislation requiring free credit freezes have been written by lawmakers of both parties.
Earlier this month, after I spoke with State Representative Zack Hudgins (D-Tukwila), he sat down and wrote a proposed bill for free freezes.
“Real simple. Like the other 8 states in the country, the bill would take the fee out,” said Rep. Hudgins.
While Rep. Hudgins likes free freezes for all, all the time. Rep. Graves believes that would unfairly chill the bottom line for credit agencies.
“We shouldn’t have any illusions that this won’t raise, that the costs won’t be passed on,” said Rep Graves. “We can’t say, you company pay these costs and therefore every other price remains the same.”
According to The United States Public Interest Research Group, the cost to freeze everyone in Washington State would be more than $100 million. So, there’s a lot at stake.
The bills are expected to drop in December and January.