HSBC loses customer data
by Gill Montia
Story link: HSBC loses customer data
HSBC is facing an investigation by the Financial Services Authority (FSA), following the loss of customer data.
Around four weeks ago, a computer disc containing details of 370,000 customers was mislaid.
The disc, which contains the names, dates of birth and insurance details of people with life assurance with the bank, disappeared while in transit between the group’s offices in Southampton and the offices of a re-insurer. The breach could result in a fine.
HSBC has been at pains to point out that the lost disk contains no address or bank account details for any customer and “would therefore be of very limited, if any, use to criminals”.
There is also no reason to suppose the information, which was in the possession of an external courier when it disappeared, has fallen into criminal hands.
However, HSBC will be contacting all customers involved and says a “thorough investigation into this matter is underway”.
FSA fines in such matters can be hefty. In December, the regulator charged insurer Norwich Union £1.26 million for having ineffective controls that could have enabled fraudsters to get hold of customers’ details.
Last year, Nationwide was fined £980,000 after a laptop which contained confidential customer details was stolen from an employee’s home.
However, both were outclassed by last year’s loss by HM Revenue & Customs of computer discs containing the names, addresses, dates of birth, child benefit numbers, National Insurance numbers and bank or building society account details of 25 million people.
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