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23 October 2012
Executives in the NHS, local government and Whitehall have been warned that their data security procedures appear to be lagging behind the private sector, with processes not always being put in place correctly to keep information secure.
Louise Byers, head of good practice at the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO), told Public Service that these sectors tend to hold considerably more sensitive data than their private counterparts, making information security especially critical.
This explains why the NHS and local government have so far received the bulk of fines levied by the organisation, she explained.
However, Ms Byers added that the private sector has taken more steps to safeguard its data.
"These are not complex or expensive solutions, they are just things that we have seen that organisations have been using to make sure data protection stays on the agenda," explained the ICO head.
Reports that the NHS is planning to be a paperless organisation by 2015 could heighten the feeling that improved data security is vital in reforming the public sector.
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