Feeds

HMRC gets it wrong on one in ten personal records

A very wobbly framework

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup

Almost one in ten records within the Inland Revenue's frameworks database contain errors, the government has admitted.

The frameworks database feeds information into various other databases held not just by HMRC but other departments too.

The problems came to light after enquiries by Tory MP for Putney Justine Greening concerning a constituent who found errors on their records. Mistakes were found in 3.5m records from a total of 47m.

Greening told The Register: "It shows there are substantial problems with records so it is no wonder there are problems with tax returns and probably tax credits too. Many people are probably unaware what is wrong."

She said she had tried to investigate why her constituent had their record changed wrongly, but the Treasury was very vague about what the process was for changing records - the department would only say that they can be changed for "business needs".

Greening will be asking more questions on this issue when the House gets back to work.

The frameworks database only contains quite simple information - first, second and surname, title, sex, data of birth, address and National Insurance number. Which begs the question of how many errors more complicated government records contain. It costs £7.5m a year to maintain it.

Even more worrying of course is the government's continued enthusiasm for more and more databases, and the ID card scheme, which makes such errors ever more damaging and difficult to correct.

In other news Sir Michael Scholar, head of the UK Statistics Authority, said today government ministers should no longer have advance notice of controversial statistics in order to restore trust in such figures, according to the Times.

Scholar clashed with the government before Christmas when he criticised the Home Office for prematurely leaking figures on knife crime. ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
GCHQ protesters stick it to British spooks ... by drinking urine
Activists told NOT to snap pics of staff at the concrete doughnut
Britain's housing crisis: What are we going to do about it?
Rent control: Better than bombs at destroying housing
What do you mean, I have to POST a PHYSICAL CHEQUE to get my gun licence?
Stop bitching about firearms fees - we need computerisation
Top beak: UK privacy law may be reconsidered because of social media
Rise of Twitter etc creates 'enormous challenges'
Redmond resists order to hand over overseas email
Court wanted peek as related to US investigation
Ex US cybersecurity czar guilty in child sex abuse website case
Health and Human Services IT security chief headed online to share vile images
NZ Justice Minister scalped as hacker leaks emails
Grab your popcorn: Subterfuge and slur disrupts election run up
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Advanced data protection for your virtualized environments
Find a natural fit for optimizing protection for the often resource-constrained data protection process found in virtual environments.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.