Privacy Commissioner investigates data thefts

The federal Privacy Commissioner has opened a formal investigation into possible breaches of the Privacy Act by Telstra mobile reseller Switch Mobile and call centre outsourcer One Touch Solutions following revelations that customer data from the two companies is for sale on the black market in India.

A statement issued by Privacy Commissioner Karen Curtis says the investigation will follow up "allegations raised in the ABC's Four Corners story, Your Money and Your Life", adding that the Privacy Commission has contacted both companies involved in the scandal.

The Four Corners program produced evidence alleging sensitive customer records, including financial and identity details, had been lost from the two companies and was now for sale.

Curtis said customers not satisfied with the response from the two companies should contact her office, adding that aggrieved customers could lay complaints with her office.

People should consider dealing "with businesses that have a clear Australian connection, and be sure you can contact them if you have any concerns; only give out personal information that is relevant to the transaction", Curtis said.

The Privacy Commissioner's investigation comes only days after Attorney General Philip Ruddock indicated he felt the alleged breaches raised by the ABC were covered by, and could be penalized under the Privacy Act should the breaches be proven.

The home page of One Touch Solutions, www1touchsolutions.com, appears to have been restored since Computerworld reported earlier in the week that it was not functioning; however, links into areas describing the company's operations, corporate values and contact details appear to be still disabled.

Switch Mobile's Web site states it anticipates around 200 customers may have been affected by the data theft, and that "all customers telemarketed by this contractor [One Touch Solutions] need to be aware that their personal details offered to this contractor at the time of the sale has been sold to a journalist in India.

"We must assume that your information too has been compromised. We recommend all customers contact our hotline to ensure you are aware of what has transpired. We will work with you actively to ensure that your identity is re-secured. This may require requesting a replacement credit card or in a handful of cases a re-issue of your passport."

Switch's statement also says it "regrets that one of our supplier's sub-contractor has committed this act" and offers to compensate customers "for this inconvenience".

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Julian Bajkowski

Computerworld
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Breitling Superocean Heritage Chronographe 44

Learn more >

SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™

Learn more >

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Panasonic 4K UHD Blu-Ray Player and Full HD Recorder with Netflix - UBT1GL-K

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

Razer DeathAdder Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?