Sens. John Thune (R-S.D.) and Mark Begich (D-Alaska) have introduced legislation to exempt certain small businesses--including physician, dental and veterinary offices--from the Federal Trade Commission's Red Flags Rule, scheduled to be effective on June 1.

The rule requires businesses to take specific steps to minimize identity theft. Several medical associations recently filed a lawsuit to prevent the FTC from extending the rule to physicians (see story).

The Senate bill, S. 3416, was referred to the Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee, which has not yet scheduled a hearing. A similar bill, H.R. 3763, passed the U.S. House last year on a 400-0 vote.

Text of S. 3416 soon will be available at

--Joseph Goedert


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