Workers to Expose Customer Privacy Issues at Marshall and Ilsely Bank

Mar 23, 2011, 06:00 ET from SMWIA

Union Members, Community Activists to Notify Customers About How to Protect Their Privacy

MADISON, Wis., March 23, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Marshall & Ilsely (M&I) Bank's "privacy policy" actually gives M&I the right to sell or give away some of the most intimate details of a customer's banking life including information identifying the customer; their address; assets and income; employment history, their medical information, information on accounts; transactions on those accounts; and their use of the M&I website.

Customers may assume that M&I Bank will use this private data merely for the bank's own internal use, but instead that information can be given or sold to an array of interests that include credit bureaus; government agencies, including the IRS; any other financial institutions including M&I BANK companies; "third parties" who perform services for M&I Bank and "others" to the extent permitted by law.

Besides this intrusion on a customer's right to privacy, executives at M&I Bank have also worked to ensure the election of politicians such as Wisconsin's Scott Walker who have made it their priority to strip the long held right of public employees to collectively bargain. 

The Sheet Metal Workers' International Association (SMWIA) believes accountability and transparency is a requirement of corporate citizenship, and thus seeks to shine a light on this bank's practices.  Members of the community will be joining SMWIA members at branch locations in Wisconsin, Nevada, Arizona, Missouri, Minnesota, Florida, Illinois, and Indiana to notify M&I customers about this important privacy issue at 12 noon (local time) on Wednesday the 23rd of March.  A list of these locations can be found here.  The SMWIA urges past and current depositors at M&I Bank to call 1-888-450-3185 to have their private data removed from any of the bank's marketing efforts.  Customers are also urged to visit for additional information.

The SMWIA, an international labor union with membership in the AFL-CIO and the Canadian Labour Congress, provides policy direction and program support on behalf of its membership in maintaining the union's jurisdiction over various types of sheet metal and related work in the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico through 151 local unions.  SMWIA members provide skilled services to the sheet metal and air conditioning industry, other metal-related manufacturing and service operations, and the transportation industry in both freight/commuter railroads and shipyards.

Paul Pimentel
Sheet Metal Workers' International Association, AFL-CIO, CLC
Phone:  202 812-8159