NCVO
Cyber Essentials Certified

PNC data makes a dash for freedom

The Police National Computer system has lost 150,000 records from it’s database.

First reported in the Times, this is another data loss for the Police in what is starting to look like a long line of errors by it’s staff.

It is not being considered a cyber attack and no red flags appear tp have been raised by the Police or the NCSC.

As a long time systems developer, I do think it does however raise an important issue, “WHERE ARE THE BACKUPS”. I spent many of my early years as computer operator on some sizable mainframes and mini’s. The one thing we always had were backups that we could go back to, a day, a week, a month or even a year, sometimes longer. So why can the police forces IT people just not recover the data?

The upshot of this blunder is that many cases will now no longer be heard, many criminals will walk free and more crimes may be committed.

This whole issue is likely to get buried quickly as it is quite embarrasing to say the least, but somewhere heads probably should roll, or at least, be severely chastised. Maybe a night in the cells!

UPDATE 16/01/2021

Priti Patel, has annouced that engineers are looking at recovering data, but they are not sure how much can be recovered. See https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-55691710 for more.

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