Met Police hunting for laptop stolen from an MP’s office containing ‘sensitive’ data

January 20, 2023
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The Met police has launched an investigation after a laptop containing “sensitive” data was stolen from an MP’s office on the parliamentary estate, a news report claimed. According to the report, the MP was left in shock after he couldn’t find his device on the desk.

The laptop reportedly contained constituency information.

The MP reported the incident to the parliament’s security office and digital service after he was unable to locate the device.

Metro.co.uk reported that two Metropolitan Police officers then visited the office, a log of the incident in April 2022 under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) shows.

The news report stated that on Thursday the Met said that a man has been arrested as enquiries continue.

The partially redacted case report shows that the unnamed MP arrived at the office on April 25 last year and raised the alarm after discovering the parliamentary-supplied laptop was missing.

The log created by the Parliamentary Digital Service (PDS), which provides IT support for MPs and Lords, reads: “Initially the laptop was thought to have been taken for repairs, but they have now confirmed it was stolen.”

A description of the data states: “The machine used by [redacted] for parliamentary business, might have contained constituent data, correspondence, his calendar and data etc…”

According to the news report, the incident took place between midday on April 21 when the MP left for the weekend and 10am on the day he returned, the log shows.

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The disclosure comes at a time of heightened concern over cybersecurity at Westminster, where the IT network is part of the Critical National Infrastructure.

Data security protocols have reportedly been tightened at parliament over the past few months, where the network faces a high level of threat from cyber-attacks which could damage the national interest if the defences are breached.

A spokesperson for the Met told Metro.co.uk: “We can confirm that we received a report on April 25, 2022 relating to the theft of a laptop from the Parliamentary Estate.

“One man has been arrested on suspicion of theft and released under investigation pending further enquiries. Enquiries continue.”



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