UK Ministry of Justice Was Fined for Privacy LeakAdded: Saturday, August 30th, 2014
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The data watchdog has recently fined the Ministry of Justice £180,000 for failing to secure sensitive and confidential data about the prisoners. Apparently, the Ministry of Justice allowed information to go missing twice, while also failing to encrypt personal details.
The issue arose when an unencrypted hard drive where data on almost 3,000 prisoners was stored went missing last May. The lost data included details of links to organized crime, health data, history of drug misuse and content about victims and visitors. This incident followed a similar case of three years ago, when the information commissioner’s office knew about the loss of another unencrypted hard drive which stored the information about 16,000 prisoners.
After the first mistake was made, the prison service received new hard drives two years ago for all of the 75 prisons across the country. Although the devices were able to encrypt data stored on them, the prison service didn’t turn the encryption option on, for unknown reason.
Personal data was insecurely handled by prisons across England and Wales for more than a year, which resulted in the latest data loss. The ICO pointed out that if the hard drives in both of these cases had been encrypted, the data would have remained secure despite the loss.
The commission also found out that a government department with security oversight for prisons supplied equipment to 75 prisons across the country without properly understanding and instructing them how to use it. All this resulted in sensitive information about prisoners and vulnerable members of the public being insecurely stored for more than a year. Moreover, this failure to provide clear oversight was only fixed when a further serious breach took place and the devices were finally configured correctly.
The ICO claimed such practice is unacceptable, and the government departments are expected to be an example of best practice when it comes to handling people’s information. The Commission believes that the fine sends a clear message that agencies must not only have the right equipment available to securely store people’s data, but must also understand how to use it properly.
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Saturday, August 30th, 2014
|How does a government fine itself and what is the net result? That is like looking in the mirror and thinking you're fat and gagging your mouth to punishes it...|
|Every year parts of the government are fined for breaches in many things,they still have to pay 100k a year to use body belts to restrain prisoners I believe and that is just the prison service,ultimately its do as I say not as I do and they pay for it albeit a pittance.|
|I get the concept but it's still like one fining oneself. Who does it pay the fine too, itself as well and more to the point how could it ever actually improve matters. Sounds like some guys in the department should be sacked rather than fine a department.||
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