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Expanding Services To Reach Victims of Identity Theft and Financial Fraud
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Publication Date: October 2010
NCJ 230590
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Office of Justice ProgramsOffice for Victims of Crime
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Victim Assistance: Lessons From the Field

Protecting Victims’ Privacy

Even before an organization begins to develop its strategies for serving victims of identity theft and fraud, it first needs to focus on developing policies and procedures for protecting victims’ privacy. Victims of identity theft have already had their privacy breached; they need to have confidence in an organization’s ability to protect them from further harm.

The Victims Initiative for Counseling, Advocacy, and Restoration in the Southwest (VICARS), for example, has all project staff undergo a criminal background check and training in the organization’s privacy policies before they handle a case, and clients who receive extended services also receive a copy of VICARS written privacy policy. Any client, even those who receive only a telephone consultation, may obtain a copy of VICARS privacy policy. For examples of how victim service organizations might deal with policies for the retention of data collected on victims, see the Identity Theft Resource Center’s retention policy.