Government faces mass claim over coronavirus data bank leaks
A new foundation is preparing to take legal action against the government for failing to properly secure personal information held in the regional health board coronavirus data bank.
Leaks in the system meant that all 26,000 people working for the health boards were able to access private information relating to 6.5 million people, including their vaccination status and if they had been named in a contract tracing thread, the ICAM foundation says.
‘The health ministry has taken an unacceptable risk with private information about millions of people,’ foundation spokeswoman Astrid Oosenbrug told broadcaster NOS. ‘People must be able to trust the government to be careful with their privacy and data security.’
The ICAM foundation says it is taking legal action because the government took a calculated risk, and ignored warnings about the potential for abuse. In particular, there should have been better monitoring of who had access to what information, the foundation said.
Information was wrongly accessed multiple times, with workers looking up information about friends, family and celebrities. In several cases, information was sold on to criminals and at least seven workers were arrested and face criminal charges.
The foundation is backed by a claim financing company which will be entitled to 20% of any damages. The foundation is planning to claim €500 for everyone whose information is included in the data bank and €1,500 for each individual whose information was wrongly accessed.
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