Senator Mary Seery-Kearney has called for swifter notification of data breaches to customers in the wake of the Fastway Couriers hack. Senator Seery-Kearney, Seanad spokesperson on Privacy Rights, said it is imperative that we know who has access to our identity information, so customers can recognise when a suspicious approach is made. Senator Seery-Kearney said: “It has been undoubtedly a shock to customers who received notification that their names, addresses and contact details were compromised in the Fastway Couriers data breach as a consequence of the cyberattack.
“The breach, which arose from a hack of their system, identified by an IT Development Contractor working for Fastway, occurred on the 25th February. “Worryingly it was notified to Fastway on 2nd March and to the Data Protection Commission on 4th March. “This was considerably outside the statutory notification period set down in General Data Protection Regulations, GDPR, of 72 hours. “The timeline is very strict to ensure that individuals whose data has been unlawfully disclosed or hacked have the opportunity to mitigate any damage that may be caused to them. “In this instance it appears neither the IT consultant nor Fastway were aware of their GDPR legal obligations.”
Senator Seery-Kearney continued: “The swift notification of a breach is essential in enabling data subjects, that’s you and me, to ensure the breach does not affect them or prejudice their identity and digital identity. “This is an obligation on all data controllers, as personal information is used for identity fraud. “Recently, we have seen that levels of online crime and cyber fraud have jumped by half in this last year. “Fraudsters rely on identity information in confidence fraud schemes online to extract money from unwitting email recipients, so it is imperative that we know who has access to our identity information, and are able to recognise it when a suspicious approach is made.”
Senator Seery-Kearney concluded: “The recipients of this personal data identity information from the Fastway breach know that those individuals received parcel deliveries, so it important that any emails or approaches made to those individuals, particularly ones that require additional information or bank details are treated with suspicion. “Anything of that nature must be reported to the Gardai promptly.”