Just names and email addresses...

Data Protection Consulting Limited

We often hear businesses say they don't have any data protection issues because they "only store contact details…."

Well, not much to worry about there then. If contact details are not kept secure what harm can come from that?

No one is likely to be fooled, after all, by an email professing to be from HMRC requesting further information to process a refund.

Nobody would be foolish enough to provide their bank details in the hope of a few hundred pounds refund payment, would they?

So no harm done if you lose those. I have had the call to my mobile telling me I’m to be arrested as part of a HMRC fraud investigation.

Of course, I guessed (hoped!) it was a scam but that didn’t stop my inner demons conjuring up an image of police cars outside my house and me being led away in handcuffs.

Felt quite queasy until I’d googled the number and seen other peoples’ comments about receiving the same call. 

However many people fell for it and there are stories circulating about people selling cars and handing over large amounts of cash to the fraudsters. 

There have now been so many similar threatening phone calls that both Which and Money Saving Expert have published advice on how to spot them.

An acquaintance friend of mine disclosed enough bank details to a random caller who claimed to be calling from his bank, to enable them to transfer (and they did) £20,000 from his business account.

The shock made him ill and he has suffered with his health ever since.

Be under no illusion, losing someone’s personal contact details increases the risk to them and people are ever more wary of sharing their personal data.

Just ask anyone who’s been scammed. If you use personal data then you have a duty of care to secure it. So put in place appropriate controls and make sure your business is not the one who inadvertently spills the bucket of personal data.

If you are feeling overwhelmed and don’t know where to start, why not head over to our training website here where you can purchase an excellent introductory training course to help you?

It is a low cost, standalone module with no obligation to buy anything else. Joy Higham, Data Protection Practitioner