Several customers of Tesco’s banking service have reacted angrily after they were informed that personal data relating to their accounts was lost in transit.
A total of 39 people have been affected by this data loss incident, with officials claiming that the data is irrecoverable. The affected parties were involved in a dispute with Tesco Bank in relation to credit card charges and financial details, home addresses and names have all been leaked as a result of the error.
Tesco Bank has not been willing to name the firm responsible for the loss, which happened when the letters were travelling between Glasgow and Manchester, but it’s been suggested that a contractor from Royal Bank of Scotland was the source of the letters.
The data loss was detected in June and Tesco informed the affected parties last month, sweetening the bitter pill by giving them free anti-fraud insurance for two years to prevent their details being used in a malicious manner by criminals.
Observers have criticised Tesco Bank and its partners for failing to properly protect personal details of a particularly sensitive nature and some believe that this data loss, although relatively small, is evidence of a wider lack of irresponsible behaviour within the financial sector.
A spokesperson for the organisation said that it is company policy to send any such correspondence via recorded delivery, but it is believed that in this case the details leaked out because they were sent by the Royal Mail’s standard service. The spokesperson went on to reassure current customers that the bank has tightened up its security across the board and contacted users to let them know of improvements and changes.
The spokesperson said that Tesco Bank would be ensuring all of its partners operate in a manner that complies with its own security regulations when it comes to dealing with sensitive customer data.
Tesco Bank had collected the financial details relating to the 39 customers making complaints from RBS just prior to the data loss because it had previously been a share holder and credit card service supplier backing up the retail brand’s banking venture.