The Information Commissioner’s Office has launched an investigation, after medical records relating to personal injury claims were found in a skip outside a law firm’s former office in St Helens, Merseyside. Separately, evidence has emerged of bodyshops releasing personal data to third-party law firms and CMCs.
A paralegal who took sensitive information from his employer when moving to a rival law firm was convicted of a criminal offence under the Data Protection Act this week.
The Information Commissioner’s Office has issued a warning to solicitors and barristers over the need to keep personal information secure, especially paper files, in the wake of “a number of data breaches” in recent months.
Let’s not underestimate the pace of change in the legal regulatory landscape over the past couple of years. Developments have been unprecedented, relentless and, at times, frustrating. 2014 is set to be another busy year for compliance officers with yet more regulatory upheaval. And it all kicks off in January with a review of the compliance officer for finance and administration (COFA) role.
Law firms which used rogue private investigators are now facing an investigation into whether they breached the Data Protection Act, the Information Commissioner’s Office has announced. There are said to be 22 law firms involved.
Rogue claims management companies have been slicing off more than a third of the cash awarded in settlement of payment protection insurance mis-selling claims, according to a report by Citizens Advice. The charity also attacked the regulator for not pursuing unauthorised CMCs in the courts.
Law firms should ensure that compliance officers for legal practice are closely involved in information security policies, a study has advised after finding that a majority of firms contacted had already suffered data breaches.
Stoke-on-Trent City Council has been fined £120,000 after an in-house solicitor sent highly sensitive information about a child protection case to the wrong e-mail address, rather than the barrister for whom it was intended.
Non-clients should have a general right to complain about lawyers – such as parties affected by delays in the conveyancing process and beneficiaries of a defective will – the Legal Services Consumer Panel said today.
The government is planning to slash unnecessary red tape around the regulation of legal services, it has emerged. The Red Tape Challenge – a government-wide initiative to cut the 21,000 regulations currently in force in the UK – will spotlight legal services in June.