Friday, March 11, 2016
Contact: Kristen Muszynski

Secretary Dunlap named to National Task Force on Business Identity Theft

WASHINGTON, DC ? Maine Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap has been named to the National Association of Secretaries of State (NASS) Task Force on Business Identity Theft, a bipartisan initiative aimed at combating the spread of business impersonation and other forms of ID-related fraud.

Secretary Dunlap will be participating in this task force alongside his peers from more than a dozen states. North Carolina Secretary of State Elaine Marshall and Iowa Secretary of State Paul Pate have been tapped to co-chair the task force's work.

"Enterprising Maine businesses deserve to know that their trade is not undermined by people trying to take advantage of their name and brand," said Dunlap. "The national scope of this problem invites a broader discussion around the best ways to prevent business identity theft and how to cope with it when it happens. I'm gratified to be a part of this effort."
The body is tasked with reviewing state business identity theft prevention and security practices, as well as new issues which have emerged since the original task force wrapped up its in work in 2012. In February 2016, after hearing member reports about a renewed wave of identity theft crimes against business, the NASS Business Services Committee recommended reconvening the Business Identity Theft Task Force.

"As attempts to hijack business identities have increased and grown more sophisticated in North Carolina and other states, this task force can play an important role in coordinating information-sharing and responses,? said Marshall. "Our goal is to improve protections for business and offer practical solutions for the state registration and filing agencies that serve them."  

"I am extremely pleased to co-chair this task force," said Pate. "Business ID theft is a very serious issue across the country and requires a joint effort to combat it. We will work hard to develop best practices and provide guidance for business in Iowa and around the U.S. in how to protect their company against ID theft scams."

Public outreach and education will be a central focus for the group, which includes the following members:

  • Iowa Secretary of State Paul Pate, Co-Chair
  • North Carolina Secretary of State Elaine Marshall, Co-Chair 
  • Colorado Secretary of State Wayne Williams 
  • Connecticut Secretary of State Denise Merrill
  • Florida Secretary of State Ken Detzner
  • Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp
  • Kentucky Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes
  • Louisiana Secretary of State Tom Schedler
  • Maine Secretary of State Matt Dunlap
  • Minnesota Secretary of State Steve Simon
  • Nevada Secretary of State Barbara Cegavske
  • Oregon Secretary of State Jeanne Atkins
  • Pennsylvania Secretary of State Pedro Cort?s

In addition to Secretaries of State, the task force will solicit expert input on cyber security, data protection and other issues from a group of Corporate Affiliate Advisors, including: CT Corporation, Corporation Service Company, Dun & Bradstreet, NIC, Northwest Registered Agent and Tecuity Inc.

A 2012 white paper, "Developing State Solutions to Business Identity Theft," is available on the task force webpage.

Founded in 1904, NASS is the oldest, nonpartisan professional organization of public officials in the U.S. Membership is open to the all U.S. states and territories. NASS serves as a medium for the exchange of information between states and fosters cooperation in the development of public policy.