3 Dec 2020

Parole Board admits to privacy breach

7:44 pm on 3 December 2020

The Parole Board has admitted to a privacy breach after one of its members lost a portable memory drive.

The Chairperson of the New Zealand Parole Board, Sir Ron Young.

New Zealand Parole Board chairperson Sir Ron Young. Photo: Aaron Smale/IKON Media

The member travelled on an Air New Zealand flight from Dunedin to Hamilton on 13 November, when they lost the drive.

New Zealand Parole Board chair Sir Ron Young told RNZ in a statement the drive was yet to be retrieved.

It contained personal information relating to 37 offenders and one victim.

The board confirmed seven of the offenders, were at Invercargill Prison and the rest at Otago Corrections Facility, at the time the drive was lost.

Sir Ron said he has informed and apologised to all those affected.

"The breach of privacy had no bearing on the outcome of any parole hearings as all decisions relating to the affected offenders had been made and documented prior to loss of the drive," he said.

"As a result of this incident I have reminded board members the requirement to ensure all sensitive information is handled in a manner that maintains privacy and security."

Sir Ron said the board is taking the incident "extremely seriously".

"I am committed to ensuring the security and confidentiality of all information our members hold," he said.

The Privacy Commissioner has been alerted to the breach.

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