Feeds

Fidelity lost HP's employee data to impress HP

We'll show you

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

Given the recent spate of laptop losses affecting major companies, many of you have wondered why the likes of Fidelity and Ernst & Young would let crucial customer information leave their own servers and desktops in the first place. Well, in Fidelity's case, we've learned that the company had a really important demo to perform - one that apparently required it to load 200,000 HP workers' personal information on a laptop.

The Register has obtained a copy of the FAQ that HP handed out to employees to explain the data inFidelity. In it, we discover Fidelity's rather flimsy excuse for outfitting a laptop full of HP data. This laptop went missing earlier this month, exposing current and former HP workers.

"Fidelity indicates that the data was imported onto a laptop in order to support discussions for a meeting at HP, during which Fidelity demonstrated a new software product they believed would assist HP in addressing some administrative issues related to the HP retirement plans," HP told its staff yesterday. "It was not necessary for the discussions or the demonstration that the data be transmitted in this way, and HP was not informed ahead of time that this would occur. HP views this as a very serious problem."

Er, so how did a Fidelity employee manage to lose track of this laptop then?

"This seems to be an isolated incident, and simply the result of human error," HP said.

Human error indeed.

Have no fear though, HP has pulled out the belt on Fidelity.

"HP has escalated the issue to the highest levels of senior management at Fidelity. We are working aggressively to ensure that our employees are supported in the best ways possible. As we learn more surrounding the circumstances, we will revisit the remedies as needed."

Several of you have sent in letters complaining that you cannot access the special Fidelity website set up to handle this debacle. Others have complained that Fidelity hasn't been terribly helpful when you do make contact. So, it would seem, proactive is a relative term.

Fidelity should still receive some credit for seeming more on the ball than Ernst & Young, which waited weeks to notify customers about its run of laptop losses. Ernst & Young has lost information on workers from Sun Microsystems, Cisco, IBM and BP. You won't have heard much about this though, as other security reporters appear too busy to pick up the phone and call Ernst & Young about the incidents.

"I am finding the articles regarding Ernst & Young laptop thefts very interesting," writes reader Rich. "Curiously though, why are none of these reports appearing on websites such as Time, Newsweek, Business Week, CIO, Computerworld, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, USA Today etc."

"I searched those and found one article regarding the HP/Fidelity theft and that was about it. I ask because I was asked the very same question when discussing the subject with a colleague."

Very curious indeed. ®

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
SMASH the Bash bug! Apple and Red Hat scramble for patch batches
'Applying multiple security updates is extremely difficult'
Apple's new iPhone 6 vulnerable to last year's TouchID fingerprint hack
But unsophisticated thieves need not attempt this trick
Hackers thrash Bash Shellshock bug: World races to cover hole
Update your gear now to avoid early attacks hitting the web
Oracle SHELLSHOCKER - data titan lists unpatchables
Database kingpin lists 32 products that can't be patched (yet) as GNU fixes second vuln
Who.is does the Harlem Shake
Blame it on LOLing XSS terroristas
Researchers tell black hats: 'YOU'RE SOOO PREDICTABLE'
Want to register that domain? We're way ahead of you.
Stunned by Shellshock Bash bug? Patch all you can – or be punished
UK data watchdog rolls up its sleeves, polishes truncheon
Ello? ello? ello?: Facebook challenger in DDoS KNOCKOUT
Gets back up again after half an hour though
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.