June 10 2016.

The Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) has warned people to think carefully before taking documentation containing personal information from one place of employment to another.

A former waste disposal employee who left his job, taking information about previous clients with him, has been prosecuted and fined.

Mark Lloyd, who worked at Acorn Waste Management Ltd in Shropshire, emailed the details of 957 clients to his personal email address as he was leaving to start a new role at a rival company. The documents contained personal information including the contact details and purchase history of customers and commercially sensitive information.

Appearing at Telford Magistrates’ Court on the 26th of May 2016, Lloyd pleaded guilty to unlawfully obtaining data and was prosecuted under section 55 of the Data Protection Act. He was fined £300, ordered to pay a victim surcharge of £30 and £405.98 costs.

Steve Eckersley, head of enforcement at the ICO said; “Taking client records that contain personal information to a new job, without permission, is a criminal offence. Employees need to be aware that documents containing personal data they have produced or worked on belong to their employer and are not theirs to take with them when they leave.”