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PRIVACY Forum Digest      Tuesday, 3 September 1996      Volume 05 : Issue 17

            Moderated by Lauren Weinstein (         
              Vortex Technology, Woodland Hills, CA, U.S.A.
                       ===== PRIVACY FORUM =====              

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        for any materials posted on or related to the PRIVACY Forum.

         Lexis-Nexis personal information database
            (Lauren Weinstein; PRIVACY Forum Moderator)
         Lexis-Nexis personal information database (Larry Hunter)

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   Quote for the day:

        "It's so much less painful if you don't flinch."

                -- Boris Karloff
                   "Thriller" ("The Bride Who Died Twice")
                   (NBC; 1960-1962)                


Date:    Tue, 3 Sep 1996 11:14:21 PDT
From: (Lauren Weinstein; PRIVACY Forum Moderator)
Subject: Lexis-Nexis personal information database

Greetings.  The following message arrived too late to get into the previous
digest.  I'm taking the unusual step of sending it out so soon (and without
other items) since I believe that many readers and their friends and
relatives may wish to take immediate action based on the information it
contains, which I've verified as correct as far as possible.

As you'll read, Lexis-Nexis has established a massive personal database.  It
is possible to request removal, following the procedures outlined below.
I've also learned independently that Mr. Fister, at (800) 227-9597 x1364, is
the contact for verifying that removals have actually been processed.

Of course, none of this addresses the issues of how many other similar
commercial databases are out there, ones that most persons don't even know
exist and that may not have any procedures for removal.  And how long do you
stay off these databases after a removal has been processed?  This is but
the tip of the proverbial iceberg, but just perhaps it'll help serve as a
wakeup call to the general population.



Date:    Tue, 3 Sep 1996 11:22:15 -0400 (EDT)
From:    Larry Hunter <>
Subject: Lexis-Nexis personal information database

Lexis-Nexis sells a commercial database called "Ptrax" which holds detailed
personal information on nearly all Americans (L-N claims it contains 300
million names).  This database includes name, current address, up to two
previous addresses, phone number, birth-date, social security number,
mother's maiden name and possible other personal information.  This database
is kept quite current.  Through the Nexis Express service, this information
could be available to any individual with a credit card.

As most readers will are aware, such information could easily be used for
theft of identity and other frauds.  It is possible to have one's name
removed from this database by making a telephone request.  Call
(800)543-6862, select option 4 ("all other questions") and tell the
representative answering that you wish to remove your name from the Ptrax
database.  You may also send a fax to (513)865-7360, or physical mail to
LEXIS-NEXIS / P.O. Box 933 / Dayton, Ohio 45401-0933.  Sending physical mail
to confirm your name has been removed is always a good idea.

As word of the existence of this database has spread on the net, Lexis-Nexis
has been inundated with calls, and has set up a special set of operators to
handle the volume.  In addition, Andrew Bleh (rhymes with "Play") is a
manager responsible for this product, and is the person to whom complaints
about the service could be directed.  He can be reached at the above 800
number, selection option 4 and then ask for extension 3385.

The information in this note has been been confirmed by me, and was
originally provided in forwarded messages from Russell Whitaker, Jason
Werner, Vern Winters, Katherine Florman and Reuben Snipper.

Larry Hunter


End of PRIVACY Forum Digest 05.17

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