Efficiency drive led to HMRC data loss, claims PAC boss

edward leigh

The head of the government’s accounting watchdog claimed that efficiency
savings led to the taxman’s decision to send sensitive data on child benefit

Edward Leigh, Public Accounts Committee chairman, said that providing the
child benefit information to the National Audit Office stripped of sensitive
data was found to be too expensive a process, and would involve payments to its
IT contractor,
the FT

Chancellor Alistair Darling yesterday insisted that the merger of the Inland
Revenue and Customs & Excise, plus ensuing efficiency drive, was nothing to
do with the loss of the child benefit data.

The FT also reported that NAO boss Sir John Bourn said senior managers at
HMRC were also aware that the data would not be desensitised.

It had earlier been claimed that a junior member of HMRC staff had
unilaterally put together the data onto two discs and sent it via internal post
to the NAO.

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