Ministry of Justice: Documents

Ministry of Justice written question – answered on 17th July 2020.

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Photo of Layla Moran Layla Moran Liberal Democrat Spokesperson (Education)

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, how many of his Department's documents have been lost since 2017; and how many of those documents were deemed sensitive.

Photo of Alex Chalk Alex Chalk Assistant Whip, The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Justice

Information relating to departments reported lost are collated on a financial year basis rather than a calendar year. As you have requested for information since 2017, I am providing information beginning from the reporting year 2016/2017.

Reporting of information relates to documents containing personal data rather than all documents. The department captures personal data loss incidents, these are broken down into the following categories:

  • Loss or theft of information assets from secured government premises
  • Loss or theft of information assets from outside secure premises
  • Insecure disposal of inadequately protected electronic equipment, devices or paper documents
  • Unauthorised disclosure
  • Other

We do not capture the loss of documents according to the classification levels so these incidents include both official and sensitive data.

Throughout this period the department has taken significant action to increase both awareness and reporting. This has led to an increase of both suspected and actual data breaches which is reflected in these figures.

This information is already made publicly available through the department’s annual report, this also includes details of where the Information Commissioner's Office has been notified due to the incident. These reports are available for 2016/17, 2017/18, 2018/19. The annual report for 2019/20 is set for publication later this year.

I have provided a copy of these reports for reference below.

2018/19

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/ministry-of-justice-annual-report-and-accounts-2018-to-2019

2017/18

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/ministry-of-justice-annual-report-and-accounts-2017-18

2016/17

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/ministry-of-justice-annual-report-and-accounts-2016-to-2017

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