MPs expenses – another useful lesson

Whatever my feelings about some MPs and their expense claims, I have to be grateful to them for providing, today, yet another good case study on personal data. Yesterday, I remarked in passing that ‘there are many other ways in which that information can reach the public domain’.

Today’s news story reveals one of the more powerful – the pull of money: apparently £300,000 will get you a leaked copy of all their receipts.

Back in November 2007, in the wake of the HMRC data breach, I referred to the bon mot which Willy Sutton apparently never uttered – that he robbed banks because “that’s where the money is”. Whether he did or did not, the principle holds good: the theft of personal data is attractive because there’s money in it.

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One thought on “MPs expenses – another useful lesson

  1. An unusual aspect of this story is that the expenses data will be published in a few months anyway, so the value is very short-term. Most private data doesn’t work like that.

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