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Departmental Data Protection

Volume 468: debated on Thursday 6 December 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Innovation, Universities and Skills on how many occasions in (a) his Department and (b) its agencies confidential data have been downloaded on to compact discs (i) without and (ii) with encryption in the last 12 month period for which figures are available; how many of those discs have been posted without using recorded or registered delivery; what procedures his Department has in place for the (A) transport, (B) exchange and (C) delivery of confidential or sensitive data; what records are kept of information held by his Department being sent outside the Department; what changes have been made to his Department’s rules and procedures on data protection in the last two years; on how many occasions his Department's procedures and rules on data protection have been breached in the last five years; what those breaches were; what procedures his Department has in place on downloading confidential data on to computer discs before its transfer; what technical protections there are in his Department’s computer systems to prevent access to information held on those systems which is not in accordance with departmental procedures; and if he will place in the Library a copy of each of his Department’s rules and procedures on the protection of confidential data on individuals, businesses and other organisations; (168257)

To ask the Secretary of State for Innovation, Universities and Skills what steps his Department has taken to protect the personal data on members of the public which it holds. (171427)

I refer the hon. Members to the statement made by my right hon. Friend the Prime Minister on 21 November 2007, Official Report, column 1179. The review by the Cabinet Secretary and security experts is looking at procedures within Departments and agencies for the storage and use of data. A statement on Departments’ procedures will be made on completion of the review.