West Berkshire Council loses children's information

Image caption,
The loss of data was the second by the council in six months

A Berkshire council lost a memory stick containing personal information about children, the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) has said.

The ICO, which enforces the Data Protection Act, said West Berkshire Council lost the USB stick, which was not encrypted or password protected.

The office said it was the second data security incident reported by the council within six months.

The council has promised to recall all its unencrypted devices.

The ICO said the stick, which went missing in March, contained information about the ethnicity and physical or mental health of the children.

Sally-Anne Poole, enforcement group manager at the ICO, said: "I am aware that staff have been provided with encrypted USB sticks since 2006 but older devices were not recalled.

"I am pleased that the council has now taken action to prevent against further data breaches."

A council spokesman said: "A new compulsory campaign of security training is already taking place and an audit is underway to ensure that no further unencrypted memory sticks are in use."

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