MAPPA Transferee Data Security Bill Being Sent to President Biden

Tristan North - Feb 05 2024
Published in: Public Policy
| Updated Feb 07 2024
The Moving Americans Privacy Protection Act “MAPPA” (H.R. 1568) is on its way to the president for his signature after quick work by the U.S. Senate.

The Moving Americans Privacy Protection Act “MAPPA” (H.R. 1568) is on its way to the president for his signature after quick work by the U.S. Senate. On 31 January, the Senate passed H.R. 1568 following its passage by the U.S. House of Representatives on 18 January. Imminent enactment of MAPPA marks a legislative victory for its congressional bill champions, WERC, our industry partners, and, most importantly, transferees and active military personnel.

“We applaud the U.S. Senate for its swift approval of H.R. 1568 through unanimous consent. Protecting the personally identifiable information (PII) of transferees shipping their household goods through U.S. seaports by closing the existing loophole in U.S. law has been a major priority for nearly a decade for talent mobility professionals and the organizations they support,” said Michael T. Jackson, WERC’s vice president of membership engagement and public policy.

“We commend both the Senate and House for passage of MAPPA and urge President Biden to swiftly sign H.R. 1568 into law to allow U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CPB) to enforce the protection of transferee data,” he said.

The Senate passed H.R. 1568 under unanimous consent, which allows for the expedited passage of a bill if there are no objections. The House had passed the bill under the similar process of suspension of the rules in which a bill cannot be amended and requires a two-thirds majority in favor of bill passage. Once MAPPA is sent to the White House, the president has 10 days in which to sign or act on it; otherwise, it automatically becomes law.

The CPB is required to sell the manifest data on vessel shipments into the U.S. to data brokerage firms that post the information online to paid subscribers. Making public the PII of the transferee, including military personnel, exposes them to identity theft, fraud, and unwanted solicitations. 

While it is not the intent of the CBP to release the sensitive data of individuals, the manifests currently provided to data brokers often includes the PII of transferees and military personnel shipping household goods the U.S. The data brokers post the manifest information online to provide an analysis and trends on shipments not intending to expose the PII of transferees.

Senators Steve Daines (R-MT), Gary Peters (D-MI), Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), and Roger Marshall (R-KS) and Congressmen Mike Walz (R-FL) and Bill Pascrell (D-NJ), as well as the leaders of the Senate Finance and House Ways and Means Committee, championed the passage of MAPPA.

For nearly 10 years, WERC, along with the American Trucking Association and the International Association of Movers (IAM) and, more recently, the National Association of Realtors (NAR) and Senior Executives Association (SEA), have supported efforts to protect the PII of military personnel and transferees. MAPPA would require the Secretary of the Treasury to remove the PII of individuals before making the manifests available to data brokers thereby correcting the oversight.