Pirate FM News

Data breach hits parents of disabled children in Cornwall

Data breach hits parents of disabled children in Cornwall

Published by Emma Carton at 12:57pm 18th September 2018. (Updated at 1:14pm 18th September 2018)

By Local Democracy Reporter, Richard Whitehouse

Parents have spoken of their shock after an email that was sent to them regarding their disabled children shared their email addresses with more than 150 people.

Cornwall Council had sent out an email to parents whose children are registered as disabled, with the council offering a new max card scheme.

However the email was sent with all the names and email addresses of the 155 recipients on display.

The council issued another email to recall the initial mail-out and then sent a third email apologising for the data breach and an assurance that it would not happen again.

However parents were unhappy and said the council needed to improve its systems to avoid a repeat incident.

One mum, who did not want to be identified, said she had no faith in the council.

"I didn't think anything of it at first, but almost immediately I had another email saying they wanted to recall the original message.

"I then had the third email saying that the email had been sent contrary to data protection regulations.

"They said they were giving sincere apologies and promised it wouldn't happen again.

"I rarely get emails from the council but when this kind of thing happens it makes me reluctant to give them my information. I have no faith in the council".

cornwall council
Cornwall Council says the email was immediately recalled and it has reviewed the incident to make sure it does not happen again

Another mum, who also wanted to remain anonymous, said it raised questions about personal information.

"Having a disabled child, you struggle enough with the council. You expect them to keep your personal information confidential and not share it with others.

"For myself, I am not going to do anything untoward with those email addresses, but you don't know what others might do.

"Many families don't want their details known and they might not be comfortable with people knowing that you have a disabled child.

"It also makes you question that if they can do this, what else might they be doing with your information.

"I hope that it won't happen again and they need to make sure that their systems are tighter to prevent it happening again".

In a statement, the council apologised and said it has reviewed the incident to make sure it does not happen again.

“Last week, a generic group email inviting people to apply for a discount card was sent to 155 residents. The email should have been blind copied, but unfortunately the email addresses were visible.

"No other personal details or names were included in the email. The message was immediately recalled and an apology was sent out. We have reviewed what happened to make sure it doesn’t happen again".

Contact Us

If you would like to submit a query or provide more information on this story please get in touch below.

Please wait...
  • Up to 3 JPG or PNG images, 2MB max size
  • We will always endeavour to credit you when we publish your pictures.
  • By uploading you are agreeing to this non-exclusive reuse, royalty-free, across all Pirate FM platforms, which extends to our partner broadcasters.
  • You retain copyright to all images.
  • If you would like to send us a video, please upload to YouTube or similar and paste the video URL into the message above.
Email Icon

Sign up for exclusive news, competitions and offers.
Proper Local News updates from Pirate FM

Pirate Extra Pirate 70s Escape LoveCornwall