UK car rescue company accused of 'cover up' following a data breach

Synopsis

After suffering a data exposure of at least 13GB of customer information covering 117,000 accounts the actions of one of the UK’s largest motoring associations provides a great insight into the importance of incident response.

An initial incorrect assessment of the event’s severity coupled with accusations by the security community of downplaying the incident with speculation of a deliberate 'cover-up' forces the company to backtrack on their published official stance.

The senior management team are then forced to step in and personally incident-manage the situation, directly apologising to customers, emailing journalists and the security community to allay fears as to their intentions and to limit the backlash.

For organisations grappling with GDPR and wishing to understand how best to structure their incident response plans, this less-than-optimal example provides great insights into the areas that will require the greatest resources and management focus.

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Analyst

Courtenay Brammar

Experienced global enterprise risk and governance professional. Previously Vice President at Morgan Stanley, Deloitte Risk Advisory practitioner and PRMIA steering committee member in both London and New York.

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Companies

  • AA plc
  • Automobile Association plc

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