No breach of confidentiality, says Freeserve

Accusations of passing personal details on to PC World are flatly denied

Freeserve has denied passing information to one of its sister companies, after allegations that some customers had received unsolicited calls from PC World sales staff. Two months after The Register reported on this alleged breach of the Data Protection Act, Freeserve has finally completed its internal investigation into the matter. A spokeswoman for Freeserve was unable to provide a written statement about the inquiry. Instead, she said that no information was passed illegally between Freeserve and PC World and that there was no breach of the Data Protection Act. Operators of Freeserve's telephone support service do not have access to the ISP's customer database, she said. Therefore, they couldn't have had access to telephone numbers and contact details to tip-off PC World about any sales leads. "The customers in question must have supplied their telephone numbers to the technicians and would have been made aware that someone would have called them back," said the spokeswoman. "Freeserve's policy is not to sell people things on our technical support lines and this message has been reinforced with all staff," she said. Of course, if nothing underhand happened it seems odd that Freeserve should have to reinforce a message about something they're not already doing. ®

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