As reported in The Vancouver Sun Friday January 11, 2013, a federal agency in Canada has lost an unencrypted external hard drive which contained the private information (names, social insurance numbers, date of birth) of more than a half million Canadian loan recipients; the very information which can be used in identity theft schemes.
On November 5th, 2012, a Human Resources and Skills Development Canada employee who was looking for a missing USB key containing the data of more than 5,000 Canadians, discovered the external hard drive to also be missing from the office in Gatineau, Quebec. The drive reportedly contained confidential information of 583,000 Canadians.
Now two months later, an internal investigation has been launched, with the public being notified roughly two weeks ago. The RCMP was called in to investigate, and have deemed it as “one of the largest privacy lapses in Canadian history”.
“I have expressed my disappointment to departmental officials at this unacceptable and avoidable incident in handling Canadians’ personal information,” Human Resources Minister Diane Finley said. “As a result, I have directed that departmental officials take a number of immediate actions to ensure that such an unnecessary situation does not happen again.”
Endpoint Protector is an endpoint solution which would have prevented this data breach. With Endpoint Protector, Human Resources and Skills Development Canada could have automatically encrypted data on external media.
Endpoint Protector allows you to control devices on your company network from an easy-to-use browser interface. Strong device use policies and data loss prevention ensure proactive protection and a safer working environment. And should an external hard drive be stolen containing the confidential information of 583,000 Canadians, it would be entirely unreadable to the thief.
Not only that, but Endpoint Protector prevents the would-be thief from being able to transfer the confidential information to their own devices. So even if they bring their own device and try to copy those confidential records, the BYOD policies coupled with our award winning Content Aware Protection, will stop them in their tracks, and even alert you to the attempted data breach.
Discover how Endpoint Protector helps you uphold Canadian privacy laws, protecting the information at your Canadian company from intentional data theft or accidental data leakage: EndpointProtector.ca.