Discgate: Treasury was told of dangers

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Indy Politics

Gordon Brown has been accused of ignoring a warning by Whitehall computer experts that could have prevented personal data on 25 million people being lost.

The Tories seized on a leaked report which showed the Treasury was told about major security risks after a review of the Government's computer network in March 2004 while Mr Brown was Chancellor. A report by senior Treasury officials identified "serious risks" which the Tories claimed were relevant to the "data disaster" at HM Revenue & Customs last month.

It said there was "no encryption between certain elements of the system" and that "security strategies were not consistent" between government departments. It said internet addresses were in the public domain and expressed concern about the lack of training for junior staff with access to sensitive information. Ministers had sought to blame the loss of the data on a junior official.

* A cabinet split has emerged over a plan by Peter Hain, the Work and Pensions Secretary, to provide 725m in compensation to 125,000 people who lost their pensions when their companies went bankrupt. It has been blocked by Downing Street and the Treasury.

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