Feeds

HMRC mails wrong private info to 50,000 taxpayers

New government, old data loss

Next gen security for virtualised datacentres

Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs apologised today for sending out private information to 50,000 tax credit recipients.

One taxpayer who contacted The Register said: "We received our tax credit notice with our National Insurance details but on the back were two strangers' work, childcare and pay details."

He then received a note from the Revenue which blamed a print supplier for wrongly preparing the notices.

The letter, signed by Paul Gerrard, director of tax credits, said: "I wish to apologise for this error and any inconvenience that it might cause ... I would be very grateful if you could return the incorrect notice in the envelope provided." The note included a stamped addressed envelope.

We asked HMRC how many of the 50,000 letters were wrongly printed and how many included other people's details but they could not tell us.

A spokeswoman for HMRC said: "HMRC takes data security extremely seriously. Unfortunately an error has occurred in one of the tax credits print runs causing some customer information to be wrongly formatted.

"Investigations are underway to identify the cause of the problem and we will be contacting affected customers in writing this week, apologising and providing a corrected award notice. An initial analysis shows that ID theft could not result from this printing error."

Last year the Revenue responded to the Poynter Review, which was set up after the loss of the entire child benefit database in 2007. A civil servant burned the database onto two CDs and popped them in the post. When the 25 million records failed to arrive they were sent again, twice.

The Rev promised "to make best endeavours to implement the Poynter recommendations by 25 June 2011".

13 months to go then... ®

Next gen security for virtualised datacentres

More from The Register

next story
Britain's housing crisis: What are we going to do about it?
Rent control: Better than bombs at destroying housing
Top beak: UK privacy law may be reconsidered because of social media
Rise of Twitter etc creates 'enormous challenges'
Ex US cybersecurity czar guilty in child sex abuse website case
Health and Human Services IT security chief headed online to share vile images
We need less U.S. in our WWW – Euro digital chief Steelie Neelie
EC moves to shift status quo at Internet Governance Forum
Oz biz regulator discovers shared servers in EPIC FACEPALM
'Not aware' that one IP can hold more than one Website
Apple tried to get a ban on Galaxy, judge said: NO, NO, NO
Judge Koh refuses Samsung ban for the third time
Pedals and wheel in that Google robo-car or it's off the road – Cali DMV
And insists on $5 million insurance per motor against accidents
prev story

Whitepapers

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup
IT departments are embracing cloud backup, but there’s a lot you need to know before choosing a service provider. Learn all the critical things you need to know.
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.
Backing up Big Data
Solving backup challenges and “protect everything from everywhere,” as we move into the era of big data management and the adoption of BYOD.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?