According to KPMG’s first Data Loss Barometer 280m people worldwide have lost personal details over the last three years, with almost a fifth (19%) of data loss incidents linked to government organisations.

The fact is everyone who shares personal information online must expect to be a victim of data loss or theft at some point.  Therefore, it is important that individuals can retain control over what personal information they make available online.

Jerry Fishenden, the Microsoft UK National Technology Officer has penned a thought-provoking opinion piece on this very topic published in the Scotsman last week.  You can read an extract of Jerry’s article here and if you would like to receive a copy of the full article please email lrg@microsoft.com.  Jerry’s views have also been enthusiastically endorsed by William Heath in his Ideal Government blog.

Despite the legitimate concerns that we all share about the security of personal information online it is a fact of the digital-age that more-and-more citizens would prefer to be able to do more business with their local authority and government agencies online.  One Government initiative to provide local authorities with access to central Government information that they can use to deliver more citizen services online is Government Connect.

Microsoft is running two regional briefings on Unified Communications that include update sessions on how local authorities can prepare for Government Connect in terms of the impact on their current ICT infrastructure, the requirement for secure email and identity management in London (Tuesday December 2nd) and Manchester (Thursday December 4th).

No single technology can provide the definitive answer to information leaks.  Government Connect has the potential to enable more secure and fully joined up eGovernment that citizens can trust with personal information.  I would encourage you and your colleagues to come along to one of our regional briefings in December.

Posted by Ian