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Pension details of 109,000 members on stolen laptop

A laptop which contained the personal details of 109,000 pensioners in the UK has been stolen, according to an article from the BBC. The laptop was stolen from an office in Buckinghamshire, and was not encrypted, although it was protected by a password, the Pensions Trust said.

The office was owned by NorthgateArinso, who provide the Pensions Trust with software.

The Pensions Trust made a press release regarding the incident, and in it said "we can confirm that a laptop containing some confidential data of The Pensions Trust's has been stolen from the Marlow office of our external software providers, NorthgateArinso."

"The view of the police and NorthgateArinso is that this was an opportunistic theft and that the laptop itself was the thief's target. NorthgateArinso has assured us that the data was password protected and as such, not easily accessible."

The theft has been reported to the Information Commissioner, as well as CIFAS, the UK's fraud prevention service. In addition, each pensioner has had a letter sent to them explaining the situation.

According to the BBC article, the database contained the names, addresses, dates of birth, employers, national insurance numbers, salary information, and even bank details for members who were actually receiving pensions. This is the latest in a string of confidential data losses that the government has faced, although in this case the incident took place at an external company's office. The laptop was stolen on 23 March, presumably kept quiet as a security precaution.

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