Bryan Cohen Feb. 24, 2014, 3:19pm

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (Legal Newsline) - Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi said on Thursday that she is working closely with the Florida legislature to strengthen laws related to data breaches to better protect Florida consumers.

Data breaches compromising the financial, medical or personal information of consumers are becoming a growing concern in the U.S., she says. Bondi's office is supporting a proposed bill that would that would require better reporting for data breaches and better security before breaches occur.

Proposed Committee Bill CJS 14-04, also known as the Florida Information Protection Act of 2014, would require businesses and governmental entities to provide proper notice of a breach to Bondi's office and the affected consumers within 30 days. The bill passed the Florida House of Representatives' Civil Justice Subcommittee on Wednesday.

"Consumers should not have to live in fear that a data breach at a business or governmental entity can cause complete chaos in their lives and lead to fraud and identity theft," Bondi said. "By working with the legislature, I fully intend to strengthen Florida's reporting requirements in order to better protect consumers' best interests in the wake of a data breach."

The proposed legislation would also require the covered entities to take reasonable measure to protect the personal data and information of Florida consumers. Under the proposed law, businesses out of compliance with the reporting requirements could face enforcement or civil penalties under Florida's Unfair and Deceptive Trade Practices Act.

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