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Sold! To The Highest Bidder

November 18, 2009

It was revealed that the details of thousands of T-Mobile phone customers had been sold to rival companies without their knowledge. Some employees decided it was worth bringing on the hassle of cold calling and possible identity theft to those customers, because at the end of the day they’d trouser a nice financial reward. It’s just a list of names and they don’t know the people so it doesn’t matter. Well I’m telling you it does matter. I’m one of those names you sold down the river. Well done, people, well done.

After getting an email from The Guardian, whose job site was hacked into just a few weeks ago containing my details, I did not need this. Apparently they know who the people are and the legal wheels have been set in motion, which should lead to T-Mobile getting their day in court and the accused, if found guilty, getting…a fine. I’m sure the thieves will be shitting themselves at the prospect of that one, “I’ll lose a bit of money, but I can walk away.” Job done. The Information Commissioner Christopher Graham said this:

“We are considering the evidence with a view to prosecuting those responsible and I am keen to go much further and close down the entire unlawful industry in personal data. But, we will only be able to do this if blaggers and others who trade in personal data face the threat of a prison sentence. The existing paltry fines for Section 55 offences are simply not enough to deter people from engaging in this lucrative criminal activity.”

In the face of the increasing likelihood of us all losing our identity in one form or another, we should perhaps revert to a time when everything was written down on paper and/or posted, cash and phone boxes were king, we were local rather than global and we had trust in our companies. But it would be Impossible and not particularly helpful. I think if the companies and government agencies concerned were properly held to account, handed really hefty fines and compensated the people affected by their slackness, they might get their act together. It would then put the responsibility where it belongs…and it’s not with us.

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