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student loans
proper protocol
external hard drive
disciplinary measures
Canadian Government Loses Information Hard Drive On Student Loans
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Canadian Government Loses Information Hard Drive on Student Loans

The Canadian Government loses Hard drive with unencrypted information on 583,000 students that had borrowed from the government between 2000-2006. It contains information on social insurance numbers, names of the students, addresses, dates of birth, and also there loan balances.

An employee discovered the hard drive was missing from an office in Gatineau, Quebec on November 5, 2011 started looking for it then, but did not report it to the security department until November 28, 2011. Then it took there internal investigators more then 2 months before they announced it to the Canadian public on Friday January 11, 2013.

At least there was no medical or banking information on this external hard drive. They said the information on this hard drive was going to be used so they could contact the students for a survey, but someone forgot to follow proper government procedures to encrypt this hard drive as a added layer of security. Also there was information of 250 Human Resources and Skills Development Canada employees on it.

Human Resources Minister Diane Finley got involved due to someone in her department made a big mistake by letting this happen. She expressed her disappointment to officials that this was unacceptable and should have been avoided losing all of there personal information. Then she went on to say that she has instructed other department officials to take immediate actions to make sure this does not happen in the future.

There will also be mandatory training for all employees on the proper handling of personal information of the Canadian people. Staff that fails to handle sensitive information like this in the future properly there will be disciplinary measures in place for those that do not follow proper protocol. As of now nobody knows if the person responsible for this incident has been disciplined for this mishap yet or if they will be.

They also said they would be attempting to contact all of these students that the info was lost by sending them letters. But if they do not get all of them they are setting up a toll free number on Monday January 14, 2013 so the students can contact them to check if they are in this group.

The government also did not inform Adam Awad of the Canadian Federation of Students until Friday January 11, 2013. He was frustrated about the information. He says they seem like the Government is taking this situation very serious about the lose of the hard drive of all this information of the student loan participates involved.


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