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South Central Ambulance Service staff data breach in 2013

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The personal data of thousands of ambulance service staff was accidentally published online back in 2013, which was one of the worst breaches of its time.

South Central Ambulance Service published the age, sexuality, and religion of almost 30,000 ambulance staff members – a serious breach of data protection regulations.

The Information Commissioner’s Office investigated the claim once it was revealed by a BBC Radio Berkshire Freedom of Information request to the service.

2,826 staff members who were employed by the organisation that covers Oxfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Hampshire and Berkshire in October 2013.

Taking breaches seriously

The statement that was made said that South Central Ambulance Service was made aware by the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) of the serious data breach in April 2014. Immediate action was taken in order to recover the data.

“All affected individuals, including past members of staff, were informed of the breach in a personal letter from the chief executive officer. We have undertaken a thorough review of all published information on the website – over 200 documents – and we can confirm that this was the only documents affected.”

The NHS is notoriously bad for data breaches and they are all too frequent.

Debbie Watson from the Unite Union who represents some of those affected by the breach said that it was “astonishing” and it “shouldn’t have happened”.

The South Central Ambulance Service said it took “information governance very seriously” and that it fully cooperated with the ICO.

All too often we hear of the NHS Trust saying they are dedicated to protecting data and that they take information governance seriously. Yet we continue to see data breaches occurring more frequently and affecting more people.

With the NHS looking to go paperless and introduce the use of smart devices, is this going to help the data protection problem they have, or only make it worse?

Still not claimed yet?

Time is running out – so if you were affected by this but have yet to claim, please contact us ASAP!


IMPORTANT: advice on this page is intended to be up-to-date for the 'first published date'.

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Your privacy is extremely important to us. Information on how we handle your data is in our Privacy Policy.
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First published by Author on August 19, 2016
Posted in the following categories: Info and tagged with

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