Two-thirds of London’s councils suffered data breaches

New research has claimed that 64 per cent of London’s councils have experienced a data breach in the last four years.

A freedom of information request sent to all 32 London boroughs by digital identity management company Secure Cloudlink found that 21 out of the 31 authorities who responded have reported a data breach in the past four years.

Bexley, Bromley, Ealing, Enfield and Haringey are among those that reported no breaches, while Kensington & Chelsea and Hackney councils refused to disclose any information.

No council said user accounts were hacked in the four-year period.

Mark Leonard, chairman at Secure Cloudlink, commented: “The sheer number of councils that have been breached is astonishing and reveals the issue of security is more prevalent than ever. There is a mass market for stolen data and hackers have become increasingly sophisticated in their tactics. Despite cyber security falling higher on the government’s agenda, the issue persists.

“For public sector organisations in particular, it’s imperative that they maintain strict control over their data, due to the highly sensitive nature of the information they handle. The risk of not doing so puts citizens at risk of falling victim to data theft.

“While this set of data exposes the fact that the majority of London local authorities are vulnerable, as the vast majority experienced a breach in the past few years, the findings do indicate that residents of the city have not been directly impacted.”