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News Release 1997-31 | March 19, 1997

Consumer Electronic Payments Task Force Announces Action Plan and Mission Statement

The Consumer Electronic Payments Task Force has adopted a mission statement and work plan for how it will conduct its study of innovative consumer electronic money and payments.

"This is the first step in a coordinated effort by the federal government to take a close look at how these emerging technologies will affect consumers," said Comptroller of the Currency Eugene A. Ludwig, chairman of the task force.

Established by Treasury Secretary Robert E. Rubin last fall, the Consumer Electronic Payments Task Force will focus particular attention on consumer issues that are expected to arise from emerging electronic money and payments technology. Besides the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, the task force includes the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, Federal Reserve Board, Office of Thrift Supervision, Federal Trade Commission, Financial Management Service, and the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.

Among the objectives outlined in the mission statement approved by task force members are the following:

  • Identify consumer issues raised by electronic money;
  • Evaluate the extent to which consumer issues concerning electronic money are addressed by state and federal laws and regulations and voluntary industry guidelines; and,
  • Identify innovative, nonregulatory approaches that would best help the electronic money industry address consumer issues.

The task force will hold informal information exchanges during the second quarter of 1997 with representatives of firms involved in innovative electronic money and payment systems, financial services industry representatives, consumer, community, privacy and other public interest advocates

In the second or third quarter of 1997, the task force will hold one or more public sessions on issues related to electronic money and payments.

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