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HMRC data blunder affects up to 50,000

HM Revenue & Customs has mistakenly sent personal details of up to 50,000 tax credit claimants to other claimants in the post. 

Claimants were sent their annual tax credit award notice, along with personal details such as salary information and the date of birth of other claimants.

HMRC has blamed a ‘print run error’ and says it will be apologising to affected customers and ensuring the mistake is not repeated. 

It insists the data included can not result in identity theft. 

A HMRC spokesman says: “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.” 

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Comments

There are 2 comments at the moment, we would love to hear your opinion too.

  1. Janice Taylor-Gaines 27th May 2010 at 5:22 pm

    Great article highlighting the need for everyone to have a much higher computer/data security awareness. Check a (free) blog, “The Business-Technology Weave” (can Google to it) – it reflects what this article is saying. It’s hosted at IT Knowledge Exchange – that site gets over a million hits a month for good reason – it has great Q&A forums for everything technical and otherwise – ALL FREE. The blog author also has a book we use at work, “I.T. WARS” (you can Google that too). It has a great Security chapter, and others that treat security. Highly recommended. Great stuff.

  2. This is interesting – didn’t HMRC lose some CD’s in the recent past with people’s personal data on it that led to ID theft in some case? This further loss is just not acceptable for a Government Agency. I also find it incredulous that they can say the information in this incident could not lead to ID theft – what planet are they on!!?

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