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Warning over paper records security

Warning over paper records security

The Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) has issued a warning over the security of paper records after UK healthcare bodies broke the law on data.

NHS Liverpool Community Health broke the Data Protection Act by losing the paper medical histories of 31 children and their mothers when it moved offices in October 2010, the ICO said.

It said there were no systems to make sure personal data was kept safe during the move and the NHS body failed to form a contract with the removal firm it used relating to data, which is a breach of the Act.

The Council for Healthcare Regulatory Excellence (CHRE) was also judged to have broken the law after the possible loss of complaint review papers which the ICO said related to sensitive personal information.

The commissioner's office said CHRE did not know if the information was ever received, if it was lost or had been destroyed because of problems with its communication, document recording and administration systems.

ICO acting head of enforcement Sally Anne Poole said: "These incidents highlight significant weaknesses in both organisations' data handling procedures.

"These incidents should act as a warning to other organisations who handle sensitive papers of the need to make sure their paper records management processes are as robust as their electronic data systems. The protection of data in all formats must be taken seriously."

The ICO said it approved of a decision by both NHS Liverpool Community Health and CHRE to review how data security is handled.

IBB Solicitors has niche expertise on applications to the Court of Protection and three of our solicitors are members of the Court of Protection's panel of professional deputies. For advice, contact a member of the Wills, Trusts and Probate team, call us on 01494 790007 or email enquiries@ibblaw.co.uk.