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Police arrest Morrisons' worker for theft of 100,000 employee payment details, ICO to investigate

17 Mar 2014
Morrisons store

West Yorkshire Police have arrested a man believed to have stolen the payroll details of over 100,000 Morrisons' employees.

Detective chief inspector Gary Hooks confirmed the arrest in a public statement, revealing the Leeds resident was a Morrisons' employee.

"An employee of Morrisons has been arrested in Leeds this morning (Monday, 17 March) in connection with an investigation into the theft of data from the company. He is currently in custody," Hooks said.

Morrisons revealed the loss in a statement on Facebook last week, confirming that it became aware of the theft when the stolen information appeared online.

"We are extremely sorry to inform you that there has been a theft of colleagues' personal information, which was uploaded onto a website," read the statement.

"As soon as we became aware of this last night we took immediate steps to ensure the data was removed from the website. It was closed down within hours of us being notified."

The information included the names, addresses and bank account details of the employees.

The supermarket chain has started a probe led by Morrisons chief executive Dalton Philips.

It is currently unclear how the data was stolen. The Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) confirmed to V3 on Monday it will investigate the loss.

"We have been made aware of reports that Morrisons have suffered a potential data breach, and we will be making enquiries," said the ICO spokesman.

If Morrisons is found to have mishandled the data, it could face a large fine from the ICO.

The privacy watchdog has already handed out numerous fines to a variety of companies and agencies for being careless with their customers' and employees' data.

Most recently the ICO fined the British Pregnancy Advisory Service (BPAS) £200,000 for poor management of its patients' data, after a hacker gained access to its systems.

 

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Alastair Stevenson
About

Alastair has worked as a reporter covering security and mobile issues at V3 since March 2012. Before entering the field of journalism Alastair had worked in numerous industries as both a freelance copy writer and artist.

View Alastair's Google+ profile

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