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ICO Survey Reveals Scam and Fraud Calls Have Increased

Sun Jul 11 2021

UK people’s trust in organisations protection of their personal information remains ‘largely stable’.

An annual tracking survey (Information Rights Strategic Plan: Trust and Confidence) commissioned by the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) to gauge public opinion on the transfer and use of personal data to public and private sectors reveals people in the UK are struggling to keep a hold of their data. To some it may seem like trying to contain a flood against a broken dam.

People these days are aware of the importance of data and data security, and how it is the responsibility of the organisation if they lose user data through negligence, theft, or a data breach. According to three-quarters of respondents, companies and organisations who misplace sensitive data must be held accountable for it.

The responses came from 2,102 adults between the 6th and 18th of May 2021 and revealed that the use of people’s personal information for scams or fraud is a major cause for concern.

Half of the respondents reported receiving more unwanted marketing calls than they did 12 months ago.

Despite this, trust in in organisations/companies’ data storage management remained ‘largely stable’ in 2021 compared with 2020.

The survey results come in the aftermath of allegations that senior officials within the department of health and social care (DHSC) used private messaging apps and emails to discuss sensitive government business. An inquiry has already been launched on the matter and it could lead to criminal prosecution according to the ICO.

Elizabeth Denham, the Information Commissioner, wrote the following statements in a blog posts where she condemned the lack of care involved in the protection of sensitive data at a high level:

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Ministers and senior officials using private correspondence channels, such as private email accounts, to conduct sensitive official business is a concerning one. It concerns the public to feel there may be a loss of transparency about decisions affecting them and their loved ones. And as the regulator of data protection and freedom of information laws, it concerns me.

Elizabeth Denham - Information Commissioner

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Sun Jul 11 2021

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