Barclays customer data 'stolen and sold', newspaper says

 
A Barclays sign Barclays said it would "contact and advise" all affected customers

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Investigations have been launched after a report that thousands of confidential files with Barclays Bank customers details had been stolen and sold.

The Mail on Sunday said an anonymous whistleblower had handed it a memory stick with the personal data of 2,000 Barclays customers, saying information on a further 25,000 was also available.

The files are said to hold passport and national insurance numbers, as well as money and health information.

Barclays said it was investigating.

Start Quote

This appears to be criminal action and we will co-operate with the authorities on pursuing the perpetrator”

End Quote Barclays spokesman

The report said the data, which also contained the individuals' attitude to risk, had been sold to "rogue City traders" and was "worth millions on the black market because it allowed unsuspecting individuals to be targeted in investment scams".

Bank 'grateful'

The files date from 2008. The customers in question had originally contacted the bank seeking financial advice from Barclays Financial Planning.

That division was shut down in 2011.

The Information Commissioner's Office said it would be working with the newspaper and police who were seeking more details.

The maximum fine for losing personal data is £500,000.

Financial commentator, David Buick, said the report was alarming: "It's the breach of trust... you as an individual actually knowing that your personal details about your life has been passed on to potentially an unscrupulous individual who will try and behave like a maverick and capitalise on your life.

"If this is proven it is absolutely disgraceful."

Barclays said it had contacted regulators as soon as it had been made aware, adding that it was grateful to the Mail on Sunday for bringing this to its attention.

''We will take all necessary steps to contact and advise those customers as soon as possible so that they can also ensure the safety of their personal data," a Barclays spokesman said.

He said protecting customers' data was a "top priority", adding: "This appears to be criminal action and we will co-operate with the authorities on pursuing the perpetrator."

 

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  • rate this
    +1

    Comment number 461.

    Mark, do you really think banks have separate data storage facilities for every single customer? Do you think they have a server in a data centre with your name on it and a similar server for every other individual customer? Or do you think it might be possible that they have a smaller number of aggregated databases which list all customers and from which data extracts can be taken?

  • rate this
    -3

    Comment number 460.

    @441 Blythkeith

    I agree with you.

    How is it possible to transfer the data of 27,000 people unless it was already gathered for easy access.

    I would of expected my details to be contained in my account only.
    Did the culprit open 27,000 accounts to get this data?

    If so, why no alarm bells?
    If not then why are all our eggs in one basket?

  • rate this
    +2

    Comment number 459.

    I don't understand this differs from the government selling our data to insurance companies, without our knowledge/permission.

    Why is it criminal in this case but not when the civil service do it?

    The end result is still "personal details about your life.... passed on to potentially an unscrupulous individual who will try and behave like a maverick and capitalise on your life"

  • rate this
    0

    Comment number 458.

    453 rememberdurruti.

    Wander down to your local high street and find a building society. Haven't seen Nationwide or the various local mutuals implicated in any of the things you list.

  • rate this
    0

    Comment number 457.

    For a long time I have practised a simple 'honey trap' - every organisation I have dealings with has a slightly different version of my 'personal details' - that way I can at least tell who let them out when I find that my data is somewhere it should not be... and then take appropriate action.

 

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