Feeds

ACS:Law fined for data breach

Couldn't happen to a nic...

Security for virtualized datacentres

ACS:Law has been fined by the Information Commissioner's Office for failing to follow data protection law.

The one-man law firm, which has since ceased trading, won infamy for using IP numbers to accuse people of illegal file-sharing. Victims received a letter offering to settle the claims rather than go to court. But ACS:Law never took anyone to court, and some judges doubted whether it ever had the legal basis to do so.

The ICO said it would have fined ACS:Law £200,000 for failing to keep information secure, but since it's gone titsup it will instead fine Andrew Crossley as an individual.

Crossley has been served with notice to pay a fine of £1,000 because he has limited means.

Information Commissioner Christopher Graham said: "Sensitive personal details relating to thousands of people were made available for download to a worldwide audience and will have caused them embarrassment and considerable distress. The security measures ACS Law had in place were barely fit for purpose in a person's home environment, let alone a business handling such sensitive details ... As Mr Crossley was a sole trader, it falls on the individual to pay the fine. Were it not for the fact that ACS:Law has ceased trading so that Mr Crossley now has limited means, a monetary penalty of £200,000 would have been imposed."

A spokeswoman for the ICO said Crossley had provided the court with a written, legal statement showing he was skint.

ACS:Law's website was brought down in September 2010.

Crossley's arrogance at the time spurred on the hackers to deeper attacks and the eventual leaking of 6,000 people's details. At the time, he told the Reg: "It was only down for a few hours. I have far more concern over the fact of my train turning up 10 minutes late or having to queue for a coffee than them wasting my time with this sort of rubbish."

The ICO found Crossley had failed to seek professional advice when setting up systems, had used a hosting service aimed at home users and had failed to install a firewall. ®

Intelligent flash storage arrays

More from The Register

next story
Scrapping the Human Rights Act: What about privacy and freedom of expression?
Justice minister's attack to destroy ability to challenge state
WHY did Sunday Mirror stoop to slurping selfies for smut sting?
Tabloid splashes, MP resigns - but there's a BIG copyright issue here
Google hits back at 'Dear Rupert' over search dominance claims
Choc Factory sniffs: 'We're not pirate-lovers - also, you publish The Sun'
EU to accuse Ireland of giving Apple an overly peachy tax deal – report
Probe expected to say single-digit rate was unlawful
Inequality increasing? BOLLOCKS! You heard me: 'Screw the 1%'
There's morality and then there's economics ...
Hey Brit taxpayers. You just spent £4m on Central London ‘innovation playground’
Catapult me a Mojito, I feel an Digital Innovation coming on
While you queued for an iPhone 6, Apple's Cook sold shares worth $35m
Right before the stock took a 3.8% dive amid bent and broken mobe drama
EU probes Google’s Android omerta again: Talk now, or else
Spill those Android secrets, or we’ll fine you
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
The next step in data security
With recent increased privacy concerns and computers becoming more powerful, the chance of hackers being able to crack smaller-sized RSA keys increases.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.