Disclosures made by the UK Department of Work and Pensions in response Freedom of Information requests show that over 1,000 civil servants illegally snooped on private citizens' data over a 13-month period. A separate disclosure from the Department of Health showed over 150 illegal breaches in the same period. As Zack Whittaker points out in a piece on ZDNet, these are the same civil servants who will havvess to unlimited amounts of sensitive personal information if the government's plan to require mandatory snooping on all Internet traffic goes through. Who needs crooks breaking into government databases when you've got civil servants stomping through them with impunity?
Between April 2010 and March 2011, 513 civil servants were found to have made “unauthorised disclosures of official, sensitive, private and/or personal information”. The year continuing, between April 2011 and January 2012, more than 460 staff were disciplined.
The DoH on the other hand said it did not log each and every breach of unlawful access to U.K. medical records. It did say there were 158 recorded breaches in 2011. Only four years earlier, there were only 28 cases, representing a fivefold increase.
The FOI requests were made by Channel 4’s investigative series, Dispatches.
UK government staff caught snooping on citizen data
Officer Jeff Thompson of the Little Rock Police Department arrested Arkansas state Representative John Walker for recording their treatment of a black man who had been put in handcuffs during a traffic stop.
An investigation by the Associated Press found 675 police officers were jailed or disciplined for misusing police databases from 2013 to 2015, and that’s just the ones who were caught. Sadie Gurman and Eric Tucker used record requests to gather data on the scope of the problem. Criminal-history and driver databases give officers critical information […]
Prompted by allegations made against celebrity Bill Cosby, California is ending its 10-year statute of limitations on rape. Current California law requires prosecution for rape to begin within 10 years of the alleged offence, with some exceptions. Under the new legislation, SB813, there will be no time limit. The change will also apply to crimes […]
#1. A-Audio Legacy Noise Cancelling Headphones with 3-Stage Technology The A-Audio Legacy Headphones are the Boing Boing Store’s best seller this month, and it’s easy to see why. With 40mm drivers, powerful circuitry, and memory foam padded circumaural ear cups, these are clearly super high-quality headphones. Plus, the patented 3-Stage Technology lets you toggle between passive […]
Vaping is getting more mainstream by the day, which means there’s been an influx of quality yet affordable vaporizers on the market. We’re particularly excited about the APX Wax Vaporizer Kit, which is an easy-to-use, high-quality vape that works with both dry herbs and waxy concentrates.If you’re a beginner trying to get into vaping, the APX […]
When you’ve had a long day and it’s time to unwind, there’s a lot you can do to relax: drink some tea, take a shower or even read a book. But there’s one thing that’s essential to a comfortable night’s rest—and that’s investing in some really good sheets. Enter Bamboo Bed Sheets. These quality sheets retail for $120, but […]