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Network failure closed hospitals to ambulance admissions

University College London hospitals trust (UCLH) has launched an investigation after a network glitch led to the closure of A&E to blue light traffic. The problem also led to cancellations of operations. The trust was last month forced to halt a number of services, including the cancellation of 50 per cent of its operations, …
Kable, 30 Mar 2011
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Hansard to pulp paper processes

Parliament's official recorder is planning to leave the paper age by processing ministers' written answers electronically. In April Hansard will launch a Parliamentary Questions Project to process responses to written questions electronically, a spokesperson said. The project is part of the three-year parliamentary Procedural …
Kable, 31 Jan 2011
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EU ministers strip consumer rights law of controversial elements

EU member states have given a proposed Consumer Rights Directive the go-ahead but have removed its most controversial elements. A European Parliament vote in March is the last hurdle to the passing of the law. Consumer protection advocates have said that the new version of the Directive will have little practical impact on UK …
Kable, 28 Jan 2011
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DWP seeks data for identity verification service

The Department for Work and Pensions has published a tender worth up to £2m for the supply of biographical data to identity online benefit claimants. The chosen supplier will provide biographical data to supplement information already available to the department, according to a notice published in the Official Journal of the …
Kable, 28 Jan 2011
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Change to sustain public sector ICT spend

Public sector investment on ICT is set to remain steady over the next five years in the face of the government's spending cuts. New research by Kable shows that efforts to save costs in other areas and a redesign of many services will ensure that spending to support these will offset cuts in other areas. UK public sector ICT …
Kable, 27 Jan 2011
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ICO slaps NHSBT for wrong organ donor data

The Information Commissioner's Office has reprimanded NHS Blood and Transplant for wrongly recording organ donation preferences over a decade. The ICO said that in March 2010 NHSBT, which manages the Organ Donation Register (ODR), found irregularities between donation preferences stated on Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency ( …
Kable, 24 Jan 2011
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Councils look for 'good enough' IT solutions

IT departments in local government are moving towards minimising their costs in response to the spending cuts, according to a new report from Socitm. The annual IT Trends in Local Public Services report from the public sector IT organisation, published on 20 January, says that IT teams are having to cope with further …
Kable, 21 Jan 2011
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Italian regulator asks for copyright reform after Google settlement

Italy's competition regulator has asked the Italian parliament to reform copyright law after accepting Google's settlement of a dispute with newspapers. It does not have the power to solve the problem of the exploitation of newspaper content, it said. The Italian Federation of Newspaper Editors had complained in 2009 that if …
Kable, 19 Jan 2011
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South Yorks police leads UK in use of ANPR cameras

Figures released by the government show large variations in the use of automatic numberplate recognition cameras by police forces. Home Office minister James Brokenshire released the figures in response to a parliamentary question from Labour MP Brian Donohoe. The numbers show that 4,225 cameras were connected by police forces …
Kable, 19 Jan 2011
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No cuts made on UK police national database

The National Police Improvement Agency has branded reports of a £3.1m cut in the Police National Database as "inaccurate". The agency said that the figure was actually related to the removal of "a contingency" which it put in place to extend the life of the Impact Nominal Index. The index is an interim database that holds …
Kable, 18 Jan 2011
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DWP will make feuding parents pay

The Department for Work and Pensions has indicated that estranged parents using its statutory service for child maintenance will be subject to charges. The plan is included in a consultation document on the future of the system, which outlines the priorities for the Child Maintenance and Enforcement Commission as it replaces …
Kable, 17 Jan 2011
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Cuts 'could hit NHS patient record plans'

The British Medical Association believes cutbacks will hinder efforts to allow patients to access their records online. The professional association for doctors says that many NHS organisations do not have IT systems which would allow patients online access to their medical details, and that computing is one of the first areas …
Kable, 12 Jan 2011
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Government joins European fingerprint database

The Home Office has opted in to the Eurodac fingerprint database, which collects the fingerprints of asylum seekers and some illegal entrants to the European Union. Immigration minister Damien Green said in a parliamentary written statement, published on 11 January, that the move will help member states determine who is …
Kable, 12 Jan 2011
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Fujitsu leads Home Office supplier spending

The Home Office paid Fujitsu Services £136m in 2009-10, with CSC, Atos and Raytheon among other major suppliers. Figures released by the Home Office to Kable under Freedom of Information have revealed the department's largest supplier of any kind in the 2009-10 financial year was an IT firm, but also that it splits its …
Kable, 11 Jan 2011
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Pickles throws down gauntlet on council data

Eric Pickles has told more than 200 "slow coach councils" that they must put spending data online or face the consequences. The local government secretary reminded them that they have until the end of January to publish data about spending of £500 or more. This includes publishing details of senior pay and councillor expenses …
Kable, 06 Jan 2011
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Called 999 recently? They've got your number

Millions of people who reported crimes have had their details stored on police databases. The revelation has emerged from information provided in response to a freedom of information request from the Press Association. It shows that police forces in England and Wales have kept data about people who call 999 or non-emergency …
Kable, 05 Jan 2011
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Speed-cam stats to be published, indicates gov

The Department for Transport is proposing that councils and police will have to publish data about speed cameras. The data could include accident rates at speed camera sites, vehicle speeds and the numbers of drivers prosecuted or offered training after offences are recorded on camera. Road safety minister Mike Penning said …
Kable, 04 Jan 2011
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Mind your own: Scotland unveils privacy principles

The Scottish Government has published new guidance on achieving privacy-friendly public services. The five principles should encourage good practice and ensure personal data is always handled with respect, according to the the Scottish Government. The principles have been devised by an expert group - including the Assistant …
Kable, 24 Dec 2010
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ICO waves stick at climate boffins over FoI compliance

The Information Commissioner's Office has made its first move to force a public sector organisation to improve its compliance with the Freedom of Information Act. It has required the University of East Anglia (UEA) to sign a commitment to further improve the way it responds to FoI requests. Until now, the ICO has only …
Kable, 23 Dec 2010
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Queen set to outlaw ID cards today

The bill abolishing the National Identity Scheme is expected to gain royal assent later today. The Home Office said that it expected the identity documents bill would be passed into law on 21 December. As a result, existing ID cards will be invalid for use in a month's time. Home office minister Damian Green said the bill's …
Kable, 21 Dec 2010
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Cabinet Office signs MoU with Vertex

Customer management outsourcing company Vertex has become the latest to sign a memorandum of understanding on efficiencies with the Cabinet Office. It said it has done so as part of the Cabinet Office led supplier contract renegotiation programme to find new savings in IT business with central government. Most of the IT firms …
Kable, 21 Dec 2010
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Cabinet Office claims major savings on ICT

The Cabinet Office has said that freezes on ICT and other spending have saved £500m since May. The department said it saved altogether £1bn through "efficiency and reform measures", with half the sum saved through moratoria on ICT, consulting, recruitment, marketing and property spending. In the 12 months from May 2010 it …
Kable, 20 Dec 2010
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Boeing wins MoD logistics deal

The Ministry of Defence has awarded the contract for the Future Logistics Information Services (Flis) project to Boeing Defence UK. Peter Luff, the defence minister, told Parliament on 3 December that the department has signed an 11-year, £800m contract with the company to deliver operationally essential logistics information …
Kable, 16 Dec 2010
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DfT spends £196m with IBM

IBM took five per cent of the money spent by the Department for Transport with its 100 biggest suppliers in 2009-10. Figures released by the department in response to a Freedom of Information request from Kable show that the technology company came second on its supplier list after construction firm Balfour Beatty. Genesys …
Kable, 14 Dec 2010
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Southwest One misses savings target

Somerset CC has confirmed that it is likely to save less than anticipated from its outsourcing deal with IBM due to the "slimming down" of council services. Southwest One, a joint venture between Somerset, Taunton Deane BC, Avon and Somerset Police and IBM, was expected to save the council £172m over seven years, but Somerset …
Kable, 13 Dec 2010