November 9, 2004
Your letter of August 10, 2004 addressed to Kenneth Bielemeier, Deputy Superintendent has been forwarded to me for a response. I apologize for the delay in responding. According to your letter, a mortgage brokerage firm in New York also wants to solicit its clients for insurance sales. You state that you want to make sure that there will not be a problem with sharing information about the customer between the mortgage brokerage firm and the insurance agent. Specifically, you ask whether two proposed arrangements between the mortgage brokerage firm and insurance agent would violate privacy acts.
The issues you have raised are not governed by New York State Banking Law or regulations. I refer you to the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act ("GLBA"). Title V ("Privacy"), Subtitle A of the GLBA entitled "Disclosure of Nonpublic Personal Information," limits the circumstances under which a financial institution may disclose nonpublic personal information about a consumer to nonaffiliated parties, and requires a financial institution to disclose to all of its customers the institution's privacy policies and practices with regard to information sharing with both affiliates and nonaffiliated third parties. The Federal Trade Commission, along with the Federal Banking agencies, has issued implementing regulations needed to carry out Title V. We recommend that you consult with a private attorney to ensure that your proposed arrangement is in compliance with GLBA and the various federal regulations. In addition, you should contact the New York State Insurance Department because the insurance agent would have to be licensed by that Department.
cc: Kenneth Bielemeier, Deputy Superintendent