On October 30, 2009 the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) issued a News Release announcing that it is granting industries under the FTC’s jurisdiction an additional 7 months (i.e., until June 1, 2010) to develop and implement their identity theft prevention programs as required under the FTC’s Identify Theft Red Flags Rule. According to the FTC News Release, this additional extension has been provided at the request of members of Congress. In making this announcement, the FTC attempts to refocus the attention of creditors and financial institutions to the FTC’s dedicated Red Flags Rule website, which contains various compliance guidance documents designed to assist affected industries with the development of Identity Theft Protection Programs. 

Also on October 30, 2009, the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia ruled that the FTC may not apply the Red Flags Rule to attorneys. The FTC’s New Release acknowledges this ruling, and further cautions that the FTC’s additional postponement of Red Flags Rule enforcement remains distinct from whatever timeline may be associated with the aforementioned court proceeding and any possible appeals.

The announcement of the additional extension is available at www.ftc.gov, and our prior posts on the Red Flags Rule are available here.