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Notice

Departmental Offices; Privacy Act of 1974, as Amended

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AGENCY:

Departmental Offices, Treasury.

ACTION:

Notice of Proposed New Privacy Act System of Records for the Home Affordable Modification Program.

SUMMARY:

Pursuant to the provisions of the Privacy Act of 1974 (5 U.S.C. 552a), the U.S. Department of the Treasury (“Treasury” or the “Department”) is giving notice that it proposes to establish a new system of records necessary to administer the Home Affordable Modification Program and related homeownership preservation programs (“HAMP”).

DATES:

We have requested that OMB waive eight days of its review period for this system of records. If OMB grants the waiver, the system of records is effective upon publication in the Federal Register; if OMB does not grant the waiver, we will implement the system on September 14, 2009. In any event, we will not disclose any information under a routine use until 32 days after publication. We may defer implementation of this system of records or one or more of the routine use statements listed below if we receive comments that persuade us to defer implementation. Comments must be received no later than September 4, 2009.

ADDRESSES:

Comments should be sent to the Deputy Assistant Secretary Fiscal Operations and Policy, Department of the Treasury, 1500 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW., Washington, DC 20220. The Department will make such comments available for public inspection and copying in the Department's Library, Room 1428, Main Treasury Building, 1500 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW., Washington, DC 20220, on official business days between the hours of 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. Eastern Time. You can make an appointment to inspect comments by telephoning (202) 622-0990. All comments, including attachments and other supporting materials received are part of the public record and subject to public disclosure. You should submit only information that you wish to make available publicly.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Theodore R. Kowalsky, Manager, Data & Information Technology, Office of Fiscal & Financial Agents, Department of the Treasury, 1500 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW., Washington, DC 20220, 202-927-9445 or at Ted.Kowalsky@do.treas.gov.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

The Department established HAMP, pursuant to the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008 (Pub. L. 110-343), to enable eligible homeowners who have a record of making timely mortgage payments, but are experiencing hardships in doing so, to modify the principal amounts and interest rates of their mortgage loans. HAMP facilitates such mortgage loan modifications by providing subsidies to mortgage loan servicers who agree to them. The Department administers HAMP with the assistance of designated Financial Agents.

The Department establishes this new system of records to provide Treasury and its Financial Agents with access to information about mortgage borrowers and their respective home mortgage loans that is necessary to determine whether, and to what extent, borrowers qualify for loan modification assistance.

The report of this new system of records, as required by 5 U.S.C. 552a(r) of the Privacy Act, has been submitted to the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform of the House of Representatives, the Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs of the Senate, and the Office of Management and Budget, pursuant to Appendix I to OMB Circular A-130, “Federal Agency Responsibilities for Maintaining Records About Individuals,” dated November 30, 2000.

The proposed new system of records, entitled “Home Affordable Modification Program—Treasury/DO .218,” is published in its entirety below.

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Dated: July 28, 2009.

Melissa Hartman,

Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary, Privacy and Treasury Records.

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TREASURY/DO .218

SYSTEM NAME:

Home Affordable Modification Program Records—Treasury/DO.

SYSTEM LOCATION:

The Office of Financial Stability, Department of the Treasury, Washington, DC. Other facilities that maintain this system of records are located in Urbana, MD and at a backup facility located in Reston, VA. Both facilities belong to the Federal National Mortgage Association (“Fannie Mae”), which has been designated as a Financial Agent for HAMP.

CATEGORIES OF INDIVIDUALS COVERED BY THE SYSTEM:

This system of records contains information about mortgage borrowers that is submitted to the Department or Start Printed Page 38485its Financial Agents by loan servicers that participate in HAMP. Information collected pursuant to HAMP is subject to the Privacy Act only to the extent that it concerns individuals; information pertaining to corporations and other business entities and organizations is not subject to the Privacy Act.

CATEGORIES OF RECORDS IN THE SYSTEM:

This system of records contains loan-level information about individual mortgage borrowers (including loan records and financial records). Typically, these records include, but are not limited to, the individual's name, Social Security Number, mailing address, and monthly income, as well as the location of the property subject to the loan, property value information, payment history, and type of mortgage.

AUTHORITY FOR MAINTENANCE OF THE SYSTEM:

Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008 (Pub. L. 110-343) (the “EESA”).

PURPOSE(S):

The purpose of this system of records is to facilitate administration of HAMP by the Department and its Financial Agents, including by enabling them to (i) collect and utilize information collected from mortgage loan servicers, including loan-level information about individual mortgage holders; and (ii) produce reports on the performance of HAMP, such as reports that concern loan modification eligibility and “exception reports” that identify certain issues that loan servicers may experience with servicing loans.

ROUTINE USES OF RECORDS MAINTAINED IN THE SYSTEM, INCLUDING CATEGORIES OF USERS AND THE PURPOSES OF SUCH USES:

These records may be used to:

(1) Disclose pertinent information to appropriate Federal, State, local or foreign agencies responsible for investigating or prosecuting violations of, or for enforcing or implementing, a statute, rule, regulation, order, or license, where the disclosing agency becomes aware of an indication of a potential violation of civil or criminal law or regulation;

(2) Disclose information to a Federal, State, or local agency, maintaining civil, criminal or other relevant enforcement information or other pertinent information, which has requested information relevant to or necessary to the requesting agency's or the bureau's hiring or retention of an individual, or issuance of a security clearance, license, contract, grant, or other benefit;

(3) Disclose information to a court, magistrate, or administrative tribunal in the course of presenting evidence, including disclosures to opposing counsel or witnesses in the course of civil discovery, litigation, or settlement negotiations, in response to a subpoena where arguably relevant to a proceeding, or in connection with criminal law proceedings;

(4) Provide information to a Congressional office in response to an inquiry made at the request of the individual to whom the record pertains;

(5) Provide information to third parties during the course of a Department investigation to the extent necessary to obtain information pertinent to that investigation;

(6) Disclose information to a consumer reporting agency to use in obtaining credit reports;

(7) Disclose information to a debt collection agency for use in debt collection services;

(8) Disclose information to a Financial Agent of the Department, its employees, agents, and contractors, or to a contractor of the Department, for the purpose of ensuring the efficient administration of HAMP and compliance with relevant guidelines, agreements, directives and requirements, and subject to the same or equivalent limitations applicable to Department's officers and employees under the Privacy Act;

(9) Disclose information originating or derived from participating loan servicers back to the same loan servicers as needed, for the purposes of audit, quality control, and reconciliation and response to borrower requests about that same borrower;

(10) Disclose information to Financial Agents, financial institutions, financial custodians, and contractors to (a) Process mortgage loan modification applications, including, but not limited to, enrollment forms; (b) implement programs relating to HAMP; (c) investigate and correct erroneous information submitted to the Department or its Financial Agents; (d) compile and review statistics to improve the quality of services provided under HAMP; or (e) develop, test and enhance computer systems used to administer HAMP;

(11) Disclose information to financial institutions, including banks and credit unions, for the purpose of disbursing payments and/or investigating the accuracy of information required to complete transactions pertaining to HAMP and for administrative purposes, such as resolving questions about a transaction;

(12) Disclose information to the appropriate Federal financial regulator or State financial regulator, or to the appropriate Consumer Protection agency, if that agency has jurisdiction over the subject matter of a complaint or inquiry, or the entity that is the subject of the complaint or inquiry;

(13) Disclose information and statistics to the Department of Housing & Urban Development and the Federal Housing Finance Agency to improve the quality of services provided under HAMP and to report on the program's overall execution and progress, if such agencies have jurisdiction over the subject matter of a complaint or inquiry, or the entity that is the subject of the complaint or inquiry;

(14) Disclose information to appropriate agencies, entities, and persons when (a) The Department suspects or has confirmed that the security or confidentiality of information in the system of records has been compromised; (b) the Department has determined that as a result of the suspected or confirmed compromise there is a risk of harm to economic or property interests, identity theft or fraud, or harm to the security or integrity of this system or other systems or programs (whether maintained by the Department or another agency or entity) that rely upon the compromised information; and (c) the disclosure made to such agencies, entities, and persons is reasonably necessary to assist in connection with the Department's efforts to respond to the suspected or confirmed compromise and prevent, minimize, or remedy such harm.

(15) Disclose information to the U.S. Department of Justice (“DOJ”) for its use in providing legal advice to the Department or in representing the Department in a proceeding before a court, adjudicative body, or other administrative body before which the Department is authorized to appear, where the use of such information by the DOJ is deemed by the Department to be relevant and necessary to the litigation, and such proceeding names as a party or interests:

(a) The Department or any component thereof, including the Office of Financial Stability (“OFS”);

(b) Any employee of the Department in his or her official capacity;

(c) Any employee of the Department in his or her individual capacity where DOJ has agreed to represent the employee; or

(d) The United States, where the Department determines that litigation is likely to affect the Department or any of its components, including OFS.Start Printed Page 38486

POLICIES AND PRACTICES FOR STORING, RETRIEVING, ACCESSING, RETAINING AND DISPOSING OF RECORDS IN THE SYSTEM:

STORAGE:

Information contained in the system of records is stored in a transactional database and an operational data store. Information from the system will also be captured in hard-copy form and stored in filing cabinets managed by personnel working on HAMP.

RETRIEVABILITY:

Information about individuals may be retrieved from the system by reference including the mortgage borrower's name, Social Security Number, address, or loan number.

SAFEGUARDS:

Safeguards designed to protect information contained in the system against unauthorized disclosure and access include, but are not limited to: (i) Department and Financial Agent policies and procedures governing privacy, information security, operational risk management, and change management; (ii) requiring Financial Agent employees to adhere to a code of conduct concerning the aforementioned policies and procedures; (iii) conducting background on all personnel with access to the system of records; (iv) training relevant personnel on privacy and information security; (v) tracking and reporting incidents of suspected or confirmed breaches of information concerning borrowers; (vi) establishing physical and technical perimeter security safeguards; (vii) utilizing antivirus and intrusion detection software; (viii) performing risk and controls assessments and mitigation, including production readiness reviews; (ix) establishing security event response teams; and (x) establishing technical and physical access controls, such as role-based access management and firewalls.

Loan servicers that participate in HAMP (i) have agreed in writing that the information they provide to Treasury or to its Financial Agents is accurate, and (ii) have submitted a “click through” agreement on a Web site requiring the loan servicer to provide accurate information in connection with using the Program Web site. In addition, the Treasury's Financial Agents will conduct loan servicer compliance reviews to validate data collection controls, procedures, and records.

RETENTION AND DISPOSAL:

Information is retained in the system on back-up tapes or in hard-copy form for seven years, except to the extent that either (i) the information is subject to a litigation hold or other legal retention obligation, in which case the data is retained as mandated by the relevant legal requirements, (ii) or the Treasury and its financial agents need the information to carry out the Program. Destruction is carried out by degaussing according to industry standards. Hard copy records are shredded and recycled.

SYSTEM MANAGER(S) AND ADDRESS(ES):

Deputy Assistant Secretary, Fiscal Operations and Policy, Department of the Treasury, 1500 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW., Washington, DC 20220.

NOTIFICATION PROCEDURE:

Individuals wishing to be notified if they are named in this system of records, to gain access to records maintained in this system, or to amend or correct information maintained in this system, must submit a written request to do so in accordance with the procedures set forth in 31 CFR §§ 1.26-.27. Address such requests to: Director, Disclosure Services Director, Disclosure Services, Department of the Treasury, 1500 Pennsylvania Ave., NW., Washington, DC 20220.

RECORD ACCESS PROCEDURES:

See “Notification Procedure” above.

CONTESTING RECORD PROCEDURE:

See “Notification Procedure” above.

RECORD SOURCE CATEGORIES:

Information about mortgage borrowers contained in the system of records is obtained from loan servicers who participate in HAMP or developed by the Treasury and its Financial Agents in connection with HAMP. Information is not obtained directly from individual mortgage borrowers to whom the information pertains.

EXEMPTIONS CLAIMED FOR THE SYSTEM:

None.

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[FR Doc. E9-18454 Filed 7-31-09; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 4810-25-P