Ireland PI company fined for data breach.
A private investigations company in Ireland has been fined and prosecuted for passing personal data and data from a government system to insurance companies.
The private investigations company Eamon O’Mordha and Company Ltd and its two directors Eamon O’Mordha and Ann O’Mordha, were taken to court for the breach by the Ireland Data Protection Commissioner
What transpired was a a friend of the company directors who worked in the Department of Social Protection was accessing records and passing information to Ms O’Mordha, whom she would meet socially. Two nephews of Ms O’Mordha’s brothers, were accessing the garda PULSE system and passing information on to her.
The private investigations company had breached the Data Protection Act by accessing the information, without the knowledge of the individual and the Department of Social Protection, and providing it to a third party.
One of the matters the private investigations company investigated was in regards to the surveillance of a widow, whose husband was killed in a workplace accident. The private investigation company obtained details about her and her children from the Department of Social Protection data system and passed them on to an insurance company.
The charges against Mr O’Mordha were eventually dropped however, the private investigations company and Ms O’Mordha pleaded guilty to 12 charges.
The judges remarks in sentencing stated that it was “utterly reprehensible” that confidential information was accessed and “quite shocking” that such information was handed over from sources and handed to the Department of Social Protection.
The private investigations company and Ms O’Mordha were each fined €10,000, (AUD$ 14,700) to be paid within six months.