The UK government has publicly apologised for accidentally publishing the addresses of more than 1,000 New Year Honours recipients online.
On Friday evening, a spreadsheet document listing postal addresses including house numbers and postcodes, was “published in error” late Friday night. The document was visible for about an hour before being removed.
The list of 1,097 honours recipients included senior police officers, politicians and high-profile names such as Sir Elton John and former director of public prosecutions Alison Saunders.
A government spokesman said that the incident was reported to the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) and all those directly affected are being contacted.
Subsequently, the government could be facing legal action from the ICO, and those whose addresses were published. Currently, the ICO has issued one fine under the new Data Protection Act against a London pharmacy.
Silkie Carlo, director of privacy campaign group Big Brother Watch, said: “It’s extremely worrying to see that the government doesn’t have a basic grip on data protection, and that people receiving some of the highest honours have been put at risk because of this.
“It’s a farcical and inexcusable mistake, especially given the new Data Protection Act passed by the government last year. It clearly can’t stick by its rules.”
Former Tory leader Sir Iain told the Sunday Times: “Ministers need to be asking some very serious questions of those involved about how this was allowed to happen and why no final checks were carried out before the document was published.”
The post #Privacy: UK government apologises for New Year Honours data breach appeared first on PrivSec Report.