New Jersey Lawmakers Hope to Stop Identity Theft Via Copiers

June 1, 2012

A bill aimed at preventing identity theft through digital copy machines used in banks, doctor’s offices and other businesses is headed to the New Jersey Senate.

The measure requires hard drives of digital copy machines to be wiped clean before the devices change hands.

The bill’s sponsors say many people aren’t aware documents that have been scanned, printed, faxed or e-mailed on digital copy machines are often stored on a hard drive, sometimes for the life of the machine. They say the measure is an important safeguard, given how often electronics are leased or resold.

Fines would be $2,500 for the first offense and $5,000 for subsequent offenses. Violators would also open themselves to legal action from identity theft victims.

The Assembly passed the bill last week on a 51-28 vote.

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