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Mailroom & Document Management


Keep it secret, keep it safe?


Jim Watson, the managing director of Shred Easy service and Daniel Berke, a fraud solicitor at Lewis Hymanson Small, discuss the recent ruling that grants The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) the power to levy fines of up to £500,000 on organisations in serious breach of the Data Protection Act.


collected and stored client data with the care you would expect in dealing with any other valuable asset.


Now, following parliamentary approval of the Data Protection Act, methods that have always been regarded as prudent practice have become a serious professional hazard.


Data protection is of the utmost priority for everyone; whether at home or at work. With firewalls, shredding facilities, passwords and various other implements in place, there is seemingly no excuse for falling victim to fraud or otherwise. Or is there?


An example: estate agents For as long as anyone can remember, estate agents and those involved in buying, letting and selling property have regarded the bank of information on their files as part of their stock in trade. In the property business, knowledge is money, so people in the profession have


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Data theft The root of the problem lies with the ingenuity and adaptability of the criminal fraternity. Identity theft and fraud has become one of the fastest growing areas of crime, increasing by a phenomenal 36% last year. To give an indication of the scale of the problem, the losses are equivalent to £631 a year, for every household in Britain.


It means that anyone handling personal details, credit card information, addresses, bank account details etc for another party is bound by law to protect this data. In the electronic age, when


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