The Council uses an external company to dispatch bulk letters on behalf of the Revenues and Benefits Department.
Unfortunately between June and early September 2020 this company suffered from a data breach which led to just over 3,000 Council customer records being exposed on the Internet. Fortunately this disclosure only consisted of name and address of the residents concerned. It did not reveal any other personal information such as phone or email contacts, council tax and/or housing benefits information. Obviously this is still very regrettable and we felt it was important to be transparent about this data breach.
We have reported this incident to the appropriate regulatory body – the Information Commissioner’s Office.
We are working with the company concerned to review the processes that they have put in place to reduce the risk of this incident happening again.
Am I affected? If so, what should I do?
You are more likely to be affected by this data breach if:
- You are liable to pay Council Tax or Business Rates to North East Derbyshire District Council.
- You have Housing Benefit and/or Council Tax Reduction entitlement from North East Derbyshire District Council.
- You received a Council Tax bill, Business Rates bill, or Housing Benefit and/or Council Tax Reduction entitlement letter between June and early September 2020
The level of personal data exposed does not require the Council to individually notify the individuals concerned as the risk this poses to individuals is low e.g. potentially receiving unwanted mail through your door.
This communication provides transparency about the breach, provide reassurance and contact details for further information and remind customers to be vigilant.
Be mindful of the following to help minimise the risk of fraud:
- If you receive an unsolicited email, letter, text or phone call asking for personal information, never reveal any full passwords, login details or account numbers until you are certain of the identity of the person making the request. Please do not click on any links you do not recognise.
- If you think you have been a victim of fraud you should report it to Action Fraud, the UK’s national fraud and internet crime reporting centre, on 0300 123 2040.