Personal details up for sale

Criminals are making millions of pounds a year by selling personal details of unsuspecting victims, the Information Commissioner said yesterday.

Christopher Graham told the Home Affairs Select Committee that the "modern scourge" of selling personal information illegally was "hugely profitable" and greater sanctions were needed to tackle it.

In one case, employees were selling customers' details to a rival firm and raking in £70,000 a year.

Instead of fines of up to £5,000 if offenders are convicted by magistrates, tougher sanctions should be brought in, Mr Graham said.