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Yes, not a stupid question at all.

In addition to Lawrence's comments I would add that lost electronic data is much more easily and rapidly copied and distributed (with further loss of control) than paper (if we look at the origins of DP it was partly because of concerns about the ease and speed with which electronic data could processed).

Jonathan Baines
Legal and Democratic Services
Buckinghamshire County Council
01296 383681

 

-----Original Message-----
From: This list is for those interested in Data Protection issues [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Lawrence Serewicz
Sent: Thursday 16 June 2011 13:19
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: [data-protection] HMRC and personal data

Jane,
Good question. My first guess is that paper cannot be encrypted but a disk can.  If you fail to encrypt the disk, even though you know the need, then you can be seen not to have taken reasonable steps.

If there was a way to encrypt paper, as paper, then that would need to be considered.  Ideally, if the information is sensitive personal (as opposed to personal information) I would expect a courier service to demonstrate the reasonable steps to keep information secure.

So far as I can see, the breaches and the fines have been around sensitive personal information rather than just personal information.

Happy to be corrected.

Best,

Lawrence



-----Original Message-----
From: This list is for those interested in Data Protection issues [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Jane Holden
Sent: 16 June 2011 13:02
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: [data-protection] HMRC and personal data

This is probably a really stupid question so forgive me but I'm at a loss to see what the difference is between sending personal data in paper format via post and an unencrypted disc?


Jane Holden
Corporate Services Officer
Legal Services
Barrow-in-Furness Borough Council
Town Hall, Duke Street
Barrow-in-Furness
Cumbria  LA14 2LD
Tel:  01229 876452
Fax: 01229 876515





-----Original Message-----
From: This list is for those interested in Data Protection issues [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Bailey, Trish
Sent: 16 June 2011 12:56
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: [data-protection] HMRC and personal data

Phil

Your obligation is to the organisation you are working for as in the "eyes" of the law your org is the Data Controller and responsible for the transfer.  I would personally (as far as possible) insist on a form of encryption for the transfer of data or alternatively (send it via Gov Connect - which would not require the encryption of the actual information.

I would also be inclined to speak to ICO and explain your situation and ask what they can advise.  Either way an acceptable method of transfer needs to be reached (its not that you are not cooperating but your organisation has obligations under DPA as well as everyone else).

I absolutely astonished that HRMC are operating in this manner - it would appear lessons have not be learned.

Many thanks
Trish
Trish-louise Bailey
Audit & Assurance (Information Governance) (IG covers:  Data Protection & Privacy, FOI, Information Security, Information Sharing & Confidentiality, Information & Records Management, Information Quality & Assurance) Telford & Wrekin Council Civic Offices Coach Central Telford
TF3 4HD
www.telford.gov.uk

em:   [log in to unmask] or [log in to unmask]
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-----Original Message-----
From: This list is for those interested in Data Protection issues [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Phil Bradshaw
Sent: 15 June 2011 17:24
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: HMRC and personal data

I have been consulted by my payroll team.

I am told that HMRC require us to export P11d information (which from a tax perspective is about mileage claims and includes staff personal data), and this gets placed on floppy disk (cd's not allowed !)  and sent "via post" to HMRC. As far as can be discerned there is no encryption being used. The HMRC website says that the files must not be "compressed" - whatever that means - and why, since there should never be any issues with lossless compression or encryption as the "original"  file can be duplicated.

Has anyone come across this. I am amazed, in view of history, that HMRC sanction this. I am still trying to get chapter & verse from HMRC but they are rather unresponsive at the moment. I can of course use a traceable courier service if it would place us in breach of our tax obligations to delay the info. , but even that places me in breach of our own policy which is now quite clear : "where possible avoid the use of removable media for the storage or transfer of personal data and where this is not possible use an appropriate level of encryption ".

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