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IMMEDIATE RELEASE





Press Release

June 21, 2006

No. 06-19



Contact:
Mokie Porter

(301) 585-4000 Ext. 146

VVA Praises Credit Monitoring Move By VA
But Questions Remain



(Washington, D.C.) – Vietnam Veterans of America applauds the move by Secretary of Veterans Affairs James Nicholson to seek bids from private companies to monitor the credit of all veterans and active-duty military personnel who may be at risk as a result of the largest personal data information breach in history.

 

“This move to pay for the credit monitoring for all veterans and active-duty servicemen and women who may be a risk is a good move by secretary Nicholson, and we commend him for it,” said VVA National President John Rowan.  “Since the Secretary is seeking bids for this service, the cost is still unclear. However, VVA is adamantly opposed to any further diminishment of VA health care and other vital services that are already under-funded to pay for this. While we share the Secretary’s commitment that this must be paid for with added funds, the Office of Management & Budget (OMB), the President, and Congress must move to find these additional funds.”

 

Rowan said that Sec. Nicholson’s announcement is “a good first step toward addressing one aspect of the issues uncovered by the data theft. The questions of what the VA Policy & Planning office was doing with confidential and privileged information on individual veterans and active-duty service members still have not been addressed, much less satisfactorily answered,” he said.

 

Questions have been raised as to whether they had legitimate reason to have Social Security data, disability codes and percentages, and other information about individuals in that office. What work were they doing? Since OMB or the White House had to have helped them get this data from other agencies, what was the purpose? These are but a few of the unanswered questions that remain, and that must be satisfactorily answered, and soon.”                             

                        

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Vietnam Veterans of America (VVA) is the nation's only congressionally chartered veterans service organization dedicated to the needs of Vietnam-era veterans and their families.  VVA's founding principle is “Never again will one generation of veterans abandon another.”

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