What is PII (Personally Identifiable Information)?

What is PII?

Personally identifiable information (PII) is any data  that could potentially identify a specific individual. Any information that can be used to distinguish one person from another and can be used to deanonymize previously anonymous data is considered PII.

Colorado Consumer Data Protection Laws

Colorado law requires certain persons and entities to take reasonable steps to protect PII. The law requires  notification of security breaches affecting personal information (PI), which includes detailed notice to Colorado residents and, in certain circumstances, notice to the Attorney General.

What does Colorado law say about the disposal of PII?

If you maintain PII, in paper or electronic form, you are required to develop a written policy to ensure that the PII is destroyed or properly disposed of when it is no longer needed. 

Examples of PII:

  • Name
    • Full name
    • Individual's maiden name
    • Mother’s maiden name
  • Personal identification numbers
    • Social security number
    • Passport number
    • Driver’s license number
    • Taxpayer identification number
    • Financial account/Bank Account numbers
    • Credit card number
  • Addresses
    • Street address
    • Email address
  • Personal telephone numbers
  • Photographic images (particularly of face or other identifying characteristics) 
  • Fingerprints
  • Handwriting
  • Biometric data
    • Retina scans
    • Voice signatures
    • Facial features
  • VIN numbers or title information from individually owned assets
  • Internet Protocol (IP) or Media Access Control (MAC) addresses that have a consistent link to an individual

The following items of information are not widely known as PII; many individuals share this information. However, if used in combination with one of the items listed above, the following could be used to identify a specific person:

  • Date of birth
  • Place of birth
  • Business telephone number
  • Business mailing or email address
  • Race
  • Religion
  • Geographical indicators
  • Employment information
  • Medical information
  • Education information
  • Financial information

Additional Resource:

Disclaimer: This information is provided as a self-help tool and does not constitute legal or financial advice. Laws, regulations and lending products are changing daily and decisions as to whether or how to use this information and/or what actions to take are solely those of the employer. The providers of this information disclaim any and all responsibility and liability for its accuracy, completeness or fitness for your particular business purposes.