Bankruptcy Data Goes Public in HSBC Goof

While a number of high-profile data breaches are a result of nefarious criminals or mischievous hackers, many are also due to simple mistakes — human or otherwise. Witness the latest accidental release of confidential data from banking giant HSBC. eSecurity Planet has the story.

HSBC Bank officials acknowledged late last week that a bug in its imaging software accidentally revealed the confidential personal information of an unknown number of customers going through bankruptcy proceedings.

In documents (available here in PDF format) filed Thursday with the New Hampshire Attorney General’s office, the bank admitted that it failed to completely redact information on forms that were filed between May 1, 2007 and Oct. 17, 2008.

The data compromised by the bug in the imaging software included HSBC credit card account information as well as line-of-credit and mortgage information included in Chapter 13 bankruptcy proof-of-claims filed electronically.

In notification letters the bank began sending out in October to affected customers, it said that some of the information may have been viewable “as a result of the deficiency in the software used to save imaged documents.”

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