RadioShack’s bankruptcy could have had terrible and lasting impacts on consumers.  RadioShack had been proposing to include consumers’  personally identifiable information as part of its trademark and intellectual property.  However, as reported by Truman Lewis, a coalition of State Attorneys General from 38 States fought the inclusion of the consumer data as part of the bankruptcy sale (www.consumeraffairs.com/news_index/privacy.html; “Bankruptcy court agrees to protect RadioShack customer data”; May 21st).

As Mr. Lewis reported,  the State Attorneys General reached a settlement under which the vast majority of the consumer data will be destroyed.  Equally important, he wrote that “…no credit or debit card account numbers, social security numbers, dates of birth or even phone numbers will be transferred.”  The Bankruptcy Court approved there settlement terms — all of which is an important result for RadioShack customers.  RadioShack had in its files, as Mr. Lewis noted, 8.5 million customer email addresses.  The new owners of all of RadioShack’s assets will only be able to keep a limited percentage of those email addresses. Whose email addresses will be included in the sale?  Mr. Lewis reports that those will only be for customers who had asked for product information within the last 2 years — and General Wireless, the new owner, will be contacting those customers and provided the chance to opt out of future General Wireless communications.

General Wireless also has agreed not to sell or share of the RadioShack customer information it is obtaining with any other entity.

This settlement is an important victory for consumers thanks to the strong actions by these 38 State Attorneys General.