U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk is introducing a bill to set a federal standard on when companies have to notify you if your personal information is exposed in a data breach. There isn't any standard at the federal level, despite large-scale data breaches in recent years. Kirk says his legislation would require companies to notify customers if more than 1,000 credit card numbers are exposed by a breach, which he thinks is a reasonable threshold.

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I want to make sure the system that Congress designs is easy for industry to put in place and doesn't act like a wet blanket on the 21st century economy, Kirk said.

In the absence of federal standards, requiring data breach notification has been left to the states. Illinois has its own law, but Kirk's proposal would override that standard.

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