In this report, we assess today’s Senate Banking hearing on fintech which in the wake of the Equifax scandal focused largely on issues of data use and security. Democrats led by Ranking Member Brown (D-OH) warned that the Equifax breach not only underlined the need for increased emphasis on data security, but also the importance of examining alternative underwriting data that may be of limited value and vulnerable to hacks. Sen. Sens. Cortez Masto (D-NV) and Tillis (R-NC) also expressed concern that alternative data could enable discriminatory lending. Reed (D-RI) argued for additional cyber-security disclosures, arguing also that the SEC may need to encourage banks to move away from vulnerable legacy technology. Sen. Van Hollen (D-MD) said that credit reporting agencies, not consumers, should be responsible when data is incorrect and Sen. Warner (D-VA) pushed again for a national federal data breach standard.
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