Callcredit welcomes tougher penalties for misuse of personal data

Leeds-based credit reference agency Callcredit warmly welcomes the tightening of the law on misuse of personal data, announced by the Department for Constitutional Affairs.

Director of industry relationships Melanie Mitchley said:

"The fact that courts will be able to jail people who trade in - or deliberately misuse - individuals' personal data will be far more of a deterrent than a fine.

Identity fraud is a growing problem. The number of victims rose to 67,406 in 2006, up by 20% on the previous year and this additional action to protect people's privacy is to be welcomed."

Lord Falconer, Secretary of State for Constitutional Affairs and Lord Chancellor, said he planned to increase the maximum punishment to two years' imprisonment as soon as Parliamentary time allows.