(Reuters) – The US Securities and Exchange Commission on Friday said it would remove some personal information from a controversial trading database and bow to pressure from the brokerage industry, which has long warned that the project would be vulnerable to hacks .  Friday's proposal, which is the subject of a public consultation, aims to limit the scope of sensitive information required by a massive new industrial trade database, the Consolidated Audit Trail (CAT), designed to help regulators better police markets.
The proposal, which comes almost two months after brokers began sending sensitive client trading information to CAT, aims to increase security requirements amid ongoing concerns when a cybercrime would expose brokers, their clients and individual staff.
The proposal would no longer require brokers to report the client's social security number or individual taxpayers' identification numbers and account numbers. It would also replace the date of birth with just the year of birth.
The purpose of the CAT was to allow regulators to trace all industries from the outset and identify buyers, sellers, exchanges and brokers involved, detect and prosecute manipulation and insider trading.
But the project has faced several years of delays as the industry has clashed with regulators over how to carry out the project and who should be responsible in the event of a security breach.
On Friday, the SEC proposed setting up a working group to set up more robust processes for accessing and analyzing CAT data. This would include limiting the maximum number of records that regulators can download and requiring a log of CAT data mining, among other measures.