Feeds

ICO scamster jailed for 20 months

Stole £400,000 with data protection fraud

New hybrid storage solutions

A man who pretended to be from the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) and was charging companies to register under the Data Protection Act has been jailed for 20 months.

Christopher Williams of Hoole, Chester was sentenced at Liverpool Crown Court.

Many businesses must register with the ICO under the Data Protection Act (DPA). Registration costs £35 a year. Any company which is a data controller as defined in the DPA must pay the fee to the ICO.

Several people have been jailed in the past for charging significantly more than this to firms by posing as agents of the ICO.

Williams obtained over £400,000 by his fraud over a period of 15 months between December 2002 and April 2004.

Williams posed as an agent of the ICO, demanding between £95 and £125 for registration. He and an accomplice ran a number of agencies perpetrating the scam.

The judge in the case said that the ruse was "a well planned and sophisticated offence led by greed and cloaked in officialdom".

The ICO worked with Merseyside Police and Trading Standards officers to investigate the activity.

"We are very pleased with the outcome of this investigation," said Simon Entwisle, chief operating officer of the ICO. "The ICO will continue to work with other authorities to bring people to justice who try to extort money from businesses in this way."

Four men were jailed by Liverpool Crown Court earlier this year after running similar schemes. Francis Boyd obtained £400,000 over a 15 month period and was jailed for two and a half years in January. Three other men working with Boyd obtained a further £200,000 in the schemes.

Copyright © 2007, OUT-LAW.com

OUT-LAW.COM is part of international law firm Pinsent Masons.

Security for virtualized datacentres

More from The Register

next story
Net neutrality protestors slam the brakes on their OWN websites
Sites link up to protest slow lanes by bogging down pages
Italy's High Court orders HP to refund punter for putting Windows on PC
Top beaks slam bundled OS as 'commercial policy of forced distribution'
Found inside ISIS terror chap's laptop: CELINE DION tunes
REPORT: Stash of terrorist material found in Syria Dell box
Uber alles-holes, claims lawsuit: Taxi biz sued by blind passengers
Sueball claims blind passengers ditched, guide dogs abused
Show us your Five-Eyes SECRETS says Privacy International
Refusal to disclose GCHQ canteen menus and prices triggers Euro Human Rights Court action
Heavy VPN users are probably pirates, says BBC
And ISPs should nab 'em on our behalf
prev story

Whitepapers

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.
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
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.