British civil servants not to take laptops outside office

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London, Jan 22 (UNI) British civil servants have been banned from taking laptops with unencrypted personal data out of their offices after cases of data loss.

It was found that two more military computers containing the sensitive details of thousands of people had been missing for more than a year.

Cabinet Secretary Sir Gus O'Donnell informed the heads of Whitehall departments about the ban, after Defence Secretary Des Browne admitted that a laptop stolen in Birmingham earlier this month was not encrypted and contained personal details on more than 150,000 people.

Mr Browne also revealed it was the third loss of a laptop with data since September 2005.

Security services were called in amid fears the information could contain the religious identities of applicants, putting Muslim recruits particularly at risk, the Daily Telegraph reported.

A Navy laptop was stolen in Manchester in October 2006, while an Army laptop with data on 500 people was also stolen from a recruiting office in Edinburgh in 2005.


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