Feeds

Sex abuse fax leak costs council £100k

Information Commissioner flexes new powers

The essential guide to IT transformation

A council that accidentally faxed details of a child sex abuse case to a member of the public was fined £100,000 by the Information Commissioner today, in the first use of his new powers to punish data breaches.

Hertfordshire County Council intended to send the fax to barristers in June this year.

Once officials realised their mistake they obtained an injunction to block the member of the public from further disclosing the information.

The fine against the council also covers a second incident, 13 days later. Another member of its childcare litigation unit misdirected another fax, this time concerning care proceedings.

"It is difficult to imagine information more sensitive than that relating to a child sex abuse case," said Christopher Graham, the Information Commissioner.

"I am concerned at this breach – not least because the local authority allowed it to happen twice within two weeks."

Hertfordshire County Council accepted Graham's findings today.

"We are sorry that these mistakes happened and have put processes in place to try to prevent any recurrence," it said.

The Information Commissioner's new powers came into force in April, and allow for fines of up to £500,000 for serious breaches of the Data Protection Act. Previously the maximum penalty was a £5,000 fine.

Graham today also fined the training contractor A4e, which runs the Department of Work and Pensions' League of Gentlemen-style job clubs, £60,000. In June it lost an unencrypted laptop containing the personal data of 24,000 people who had used community legal advice services in Hull and Leicester. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
'Stop dissing Google or quit': OK, I quit, says Code Club co-founder
And now a message from our sponsors: 'STFU or else'
Top beak: UK privacy law may be reconsidered because of social media
Rise of Twitter etc creates 'enormous challenges'
Uber, Lyft and cutting corners: The true face of the Sharing Economy
Casual labour and tired ideas = not really web-tastic
Ex US cybersecurity czar guilty in child sex abuse website case
Health and Human Services IT security chief headed online to share vile images
Don't even THINK about copyright violation, says Indian state
Pre-emptive arrest for pirates in Karnataka
The police are WRONG: Watching YouTube videos is NOT illegal
And our man Corfield is pretty bloody cross about it
Oz biz regulator discovers shared servers in EPIC FACEPALM
'Not aware' that one IP can hold more than one Website
prev story

Whitepapers

Top 10 endpoint backup mistakes
Avoid the ten endpoint backup mistakes to ensure that your critical corporate data is protected and end user productivity is improved.
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 distributed data
Eliminating the redundant use of bandwidth and storage capacity and application consolidation in the modern data center.
The essential guide to IT transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIOs automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.