Colchester NHS Trust Sacks Manager Over lost laptop

Looks as if public bodies are finally getting tough with data handling. The Colchester University Hospital, in Essex, has fired one of its managers after a laptop was stolen from his car.

The device's hard drive contained the names, addresses and treatment details of 21,000 patients and were not protected by any encryption solution. To make matters worse, the manager was on holiday in Scotland when the theft occurred.

The chief executive of Colchester Hospital University NHS Foundation Trust, Peter Murphy, said that “Following a disciplinary hearing held on Friday after a detailed investigation, the senior manager whose hospital laptop computer was stolen has been dismissed from the Trust with immediate effect. The unanimous decision of the disciplinary panel sends out a clear statement about how seriously the Trust takes security and patient confidentiality. I again apologise for the distress the theft of this laptop may have caused.”

The trust has already informed the patients concerned about the security blunder.

However, some like SCmagazine, have pointed out that the manager could possibly just be a mere victim of a dysfunctional organisation which has failed to secure its data using encryption.