Saturday, December 24, 2011

Government Workers Fired for Data Privacy Violation

Five government employees were fired for inappropriately accessing sensitive government computer applications and selling personal details to debt collection agencies. Two more are under investigation as part of a national review which could result in prosecutions.

The five employees admitted breaching the government's strict privacy code. As a condition of employment they had signed the Code of Conduct and a declaration acknowledging their responsibility to protect privacy.
"There is never any excuse for accessing a client's file without a legitimate work-related reason." - Janet Grossman, Work and Income
The Privacy Commisionaer has been informed and each client whose privacy has been breached is being contacted individually.

The government said it has a zero tolerance for staff who breach the privacy of clients. To insure this the government's Integrity Unit regularly conducts time consuming reviews the logs of user access and activity to identify violations.
Are you auditing violations of privacy by your employees? Download a white paper on privacy breach audits. Learn how to proactively identify unauthorized breaches of data privacy, even by authorized users - with no hardware and no on-site software.
Sources:
(a) WINZ staff under fire - Stuff.co.nz, December 24, 2011

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