Articles about data protection

Crop of doctor with pen and clipboard

Nosey ex-NHS staffer slapped with fine for illegally peeking at medical records

A former midwifery assistant from Essex has been fined £1,715 for unlawfully accessing and sharing patients’ medical records. Brioney Woolfe pleaded guilty to the offences, which took place between December 2014 and May 2016, at Colchester Magistrate’s Court. The UK’s data protection watchdog, the Information Commissioner, …
Rebecca Hill, 14 Aug 2017
Parliament photo by Shutterstock

Coming soon to a Parliament near you – UK's Data Protection Bill

The UK's new legislation on data protection is to get its first airing in Parliament next month, the government has said. The Data Protection Bill, announced in the Queen's Speech at the end of June, will replace existing data protection legislation on both corporate data and data processing by law enforcement agencies. The …
Rebecca Hill, 3 Aug 2017
police hacking

Revealed: 779 cases of data misuse across 34 British police forces

A freedom-of-information request by Huntsman Security has discovered that UK police forces detected and investigated at least 779 cases of potential data misuse by personnel between January 2016 and April 2017. Despite the high number of cases, the same request also revealed that the vast majority of the 34 police forces …
John Leyden, 26 Jul 2017

Media mogul Murdoch's 'Sky dataset' swallow poses 'grave threat'

The proposed £11.7bn takeover of Sky by Rupert Murdoch's 21st Century Fox is a "grave threat" to the democratic process, members of the UK's House of Lords have claimed. In a letter to The Observer newspaper, six peers have said that Fox – which currently owns 39 per cent of Sky – could gain too much access to one of the " …
Rebecca Hill, 17 Jul 2017

Virgin Trains dodges smack from ICO: CCTV pics of Corbyn were OK

Virgin Trains did not break data protection laws when it released images of UK's opposition Labour party leader Jeremy Corbyn during his supposedly "ram-packed" trip to Newcastle, the UK’s data protection watchdog has said. It did, however, infringe on other passengers' privacy, the Information Commissioner’s Office ruled - …
Rebecca Hill, 12 Jul 2017
Call centre worker looks frustrated and unhappy. Photo by Shutterstock

Tory-commissioned call centres 'might have bent data protection laws'

The UK Conservative Party has been accused of pushing its message on potential voters in a way that may have breached data protection laws. The party hired Blue Telecoms to carry out direct marketing and market research calls during the run-up to this year's general election – but an investigation has suggested that employees …
Rebecca Hill, 23 Jun 2017
Junk mail on a doormat. Pic via Shutterstick

Doormat junk: Takeaway menus, Farmfoods flyer, NHS data-sharing letter... wait, what?

A Midlands NHS group has committed face-palm after face-palm in its efforts to inform residents about its patient data-sharing plans. This week, residents of Warwickshire, England, received a letter from Alex Price-Forbes, chief information officer for Coventry and Rugby Clinical Commissioning Group. The idea was to tell them …
Rebecca Hill, 23 Jun 2017

Rustle up a privacy research project and ICO queen Liz will see you handsomely rewarded

The UK's data watchdog is offering up to £100,000 for projects looking at how emergent tech affects information rights, saying that practical research "needs a stronger voice". As survey after survey shows declining public trust in the use of their data and the government plans to slurp even more, the Information Commissioner' …
Rebecca Hill, 7 Jun 2017

UK trigger-happy over fines for data breaches compared with Europe

The UK is among the most fined nations in Europe for data protection breaches, doubling the amount of penalties to £3.2m (€3.6m) during 2016. According to an analysis by mega consultancy firm PwC, breaches of UK data protection laws last year were followed by 35 fines. It found that the UK Information Commissioner's Office ( …
Kat Hall, 1 Jun 2017

UK biz: Oh (yawn) GDPR? Was that *next* May? – survey

UK businesses are risking damaging fines by ignoring the implications of upcoming data protection rules, according to a new survey. A poll of 2,000 businesses by YouGov exposed a significant lack of awareness and urgency among many businesses concerning the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which comes into effect on …
Team Register, 30 May 2017

Australian privacy commissioner flags new data mining rules for government agencies

Australia's Department of Human Services (DHS) might have given itself a clean bill of health over its notorious “Robodebt” data-matching program, but Privacy Commissioner Timothy Pilgrim wants to check it out for himself. Speaking to a Senate inquiry into the program today, Pilgrim said the inquiry will take place after the …
doctor

Google DeepMind's use of 1.6m Brits' medical records to test app was 'legally inappropriate'

Updated Google's use of Brits' real medical records to test a software algorithm that diagnoses kidney disease was legally "inappropriate," says Dame Fiona Caldicott, the National Data Guardian at the UK's Department of Health. In April 2016 it was revealed the web giant had signed a deal with the Royal Free Hospital in London to …
Iain Thomson, 16 May 2017
Two bratwurst frying in the pan

Male escort forgot pregnancy protection, scores data protection instead

A German woman who was impregnated by a male escort she apparently hired to liven up a stay in the East of the country has had her attempts to track him down trumped by the country’s rigid data protection laws. The woman booked the professional priapist for a three night sojourn in a second floor room in a hotel in the town of …
Clodagh Doyle, 2 May 2017
Big bill

Last year's ICO fines would be 79 times higher under GDPR

Fines from the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) against Brit companies last year would have been £69m rather than £880,500 if the pending General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) had been applied, according to analysis by NCC Group. The 2015 penalties would also have risen drastically from £1m to £35m under the same …
John Leyden, 28 Apr 2017
Orion Hindawi

'We should have done better' – the feeble words of a CEO caught using real hospital IT in infosec product demos

The CEO of computer security biz Tanium has admitted his staff logged into hospital networks and accessed live IT systems during product demos with potential customers. Since 2014 Tanium sales executives have used healthcare systems at the El Camino Hospital in Mountain View, California, to demonstrate their endpoint …
Iain Thomson, 20 Apr 2017
Metropolitan police image via Shutterstock

30,000 London gun owners hit by Met Police 'data breach'

London gun owners are asking questions of the Metropolitan Police after the force seemingly handed the addresses of 30,000 firearm and shotgun owners to a direct mail marketing agency for a commercial firm's advertising campaign. The first any of the affected people knew about the blunder was when the leaflet (pictured below) …
Gareth Corfield, 19 Apr 2017

Awkward. Investigatory Powers Act could prove hurdle to UK-EU Privacy Shield following Brexit

UK surveillance laws could be an obstacle to the creation of a US-Europe Privacy Shield-style arrangement post-Brexit. The issue came up during testimony by Sir Julian King, EU Commissioner for the Security Union, at a Home Affairs select committee hearing on Tuesday. Once Brexit happens, the UK will have to set up something …
John Leyden, 3 Mar 2017
Conveyor belt production of jam-topped biscuits. Photo by Shutterstock

Planned 'cookie law' update will exacerbate problems of old law – expert

Newly proposed reforms to EU ePrivacy rules could exacerbate problems that stem from existing rules governing the use of "cookies". The plans, outlined by the European Commission earlier this year, would not resolve the problem businesses currently have in finding mechanisms for obtaining device users' consent to cookies that …
OUT-LAW.COM, 1 Mar 2017

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