25,000 BBC employees see details exposed in major data breach

BBC logo at the entrance of BBC Broadcasting House in London
(Image credit: Shutterstock)

The BBC is launching an investigation into a pension scheme data breach that exposed the details of 25,000 current and former employees.

According to the corporation, which says it has contacted those affected, the breach included the names, dates of birth, home addresses, national insurance numbers and BBC pension scheme membership status of the victims.

The BBC pension scheme has over 50,000 members, with a spokesperson telling the Guardian 25,290 of those members were affected by the data breach.

BBC notifies ICO

As per UK rules, the BBC notified the Information Commissioner's Office and the UK’s privacy regulator, but so far there is no reportedly evidence that the breach was part of a ransomware attack.

The email to members of the pension scheme stated that their data had been “copied from an online data storage service”, but gave no further details on the cause of the breach.

BBC Pension Trust chair Catherine Claydon’s email to the victims of the breach stated, “We take this incident extremely seriously and we want to reassure you that we and the BBC have taken immediate steps to assess and contain the incident.”

“Please be reassured that we have responded quickly and that the source of the incident has been secured. We are working at pace with specialist teams internally and externally to understand how this happened and take appropriate action. As a precaution, we have also put in place additional security measures and continue to monitor the situation,” the email concluded.

The BBC further stated that they are working with “specialist teams” to identify the cause of the breach, further stating that “additional security measures have also been put in place”.

More from TechRadar Pro

Benedict Collins
Staff Writer (Security)

Benedict has been writing about security issues for close to 5 years, at first covering geopolitics and international relations while at the University of Buckingham. During this time he studied BA Politics with Journalism, for which he received a second-class honours (upper division). Benedict then continued his studies at a postgraduate level and achieved a distinction in MA Security, Intelligence and Diplomacy. Benedict transitioned his security interests towards cybersecurity upon joining TechRadar Pro as a Staff Writer, focussing on state-sponsored threat actors, malware, social engineering, and national security. Benedict is also an expert on B2B security products, including firewalls, antivirus, endpoint security, and password management.