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Accountancy exam results, personal data of 6,541 people accidentally disclosed: MOF statutory body

SINGAPORE — A statutory body under the Ministry of Finance said on Friday (Nov 22) that it has accidentally disclosed the chartered accountant (CA) qualification examination results of more than 6,500 people, along with other personal information about them.

The Singapore Accountancy Commission, which comes under the Ministry of Finance, said on Friday (Nov 22) that it ''deeply regrets" the "inadvertent" disclosure of the data relating to 6,541 people.

The Singapore Accountancy Commission, which comes under the Ministry of Finance, said on Friday (Nov 22) that it ''deeply regrets" the "inadvertent" disclosure of the data relating to 6,541 people.

SINGAPORE — A statutory body under the Ministry of Finance said on Friday (Nov 22) that it has accidentally disclosed the chartered accountant (CA) qualification examination results of more than 6,500 people, along with other personal information about them.

The Singapore Accountancy Commission (SAC) said in a media release that it “deeply regrets” that it sent the data to 41 people at 21 accredited training organisations and one vendor. The breach occurred between June 12 and Oct 22 this year.

The data relates to past and current Singapore CA qualification candidates, accredited training organisation personnel, and other personnel involved in the administration of the CA qualification programme before May 17 this year.

Besides their exam results, the data breach also involved the names, NRIC numbers, dates of birth, contact details, and education and employment information of the 6,541 people involved.

The folder containing the data was “inadvertently” attached in an email to the 22 organisations, the SAC said.

The incident came to light on Nov 7 after SAC had implemented a new data protection filter as part of the recommendations by the Public Sector Data Security Review Committee.

Following the discovery, the SAC contacted all 22 organisations the following Monday, Nov 11, to request that the recipients delete the data folder. It also started ascertaining whether recipients of the data folder had forwarded the folder to other persons.

As of Thursday, all 22 organisations have confirmed that they had deleted the folder, the SAC said. It added that this included “any forwarded data”. The recipients of the forwarded data had also confirmed the deletion of the data, the SAC told TODAY in response to a query.

Affected people were told of the incident on Friday, the SAC said, adding that they should contact it at sac_check [at] sac.gov.sg if they have further inquiries.

The Personal Data Protection Commission was also notified of the breach.

The SAC will now set up a panel chaired by its chairman, Mr Chaly Mah, to review the Incident and make any necessary recommendations. The panel will comprise members of the SAC Board, the Smart Nation and Digital Government Office under the Prime Minister’s Office, and the Public Service Division.

“The SAC takes a serious view of this Incident, and deeply regrets this mistake,” it said.

Among other recent compromises of personal data, last year, SingHealth was hit by a major cyber attack, which resulted in a personal data breach affecting 1.5 million patients.

 

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data breach Singapore Accountancy Commission MOF

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