The Perth Advertiser reports that of scores of workers of Perth and Kinross Council have been exposed workers to ID theft due to a USB memory stick containing their pay details which was left in the street. The USB key contained 59 documents, many from the council's Environmental Services Department. It was found near a bike shelter close to the council building at Pullar House. A retired man found the memory device and handed it to the local paper.
Documents on the key included 25 spreadsheets some of which included details of council workers' pay, National Insurance contributions, and overtime hours. The USB key also contained health and safety reports, performance reviews, and budget information.
Information on workers ranged from HGV drivers to cemetery workers.
The loss of the device seems not to have been reported to police. A spokesman for the council thanked the paper for the recovery of the lost memory device, which he described as "an unfortunate accident".
A spokesman at the council explained that council workers sometimes take work home with them on USB sticks. "Officers in this situation are all aware of the need for care and it would seem that this was an unfortunate accident. The device contained some historical information but much of the documentation was on the device in order to assist the owner in preparing some draft material for the new Business Management Improvement Plan."
Far from being grateful for the return of the USB key the council criticised the man who found the key for not returning it directly to the council. "The failure by the finder of the USB device to return it to the council constitutes theft and the council would like to thank the PA for its return," he said.