The U.S. House has passed by voice vote legislation--identical to that recently approved in the Senate--to exempt health care providers, attorneys and certain other service providers from provisions of the Red Flags Rule to combat identity theft.

That means the bill, S. 3987, now goes to President Obama for his signature. The Red Flags Rule from the Federal Trade Commission requires businesses that act as "creditors" to take specific steps to minimize identity theft. The newly approved legislation clarified creditors who must comply, in effect, exempting providers and others who do not loan money but permit payment to be deferred.

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