A laptop containing the personal information of up to 40,000 United Conservative Party members has been stolen from a staffer’s vehicle.
In a memo sent to Calgary party members Wednesday evening, the UCP said the password-protected laptop was stolen from the vehicle in a secure underground parkade on Monday evening. Other vehicles were also broken into, and the UCP said police do not believe the staff member’s vehicle was targeted.
The laptop did not contain personal financial data or the UCP membership database. But data stored on the device “may have included some member names, email addresses, telephone numbers, addresses,” the UCP said. Donation amounts might have also been included.
While the UCP said it didn’t know how many party members could be affected by the breach, it has determined that only information of Calgary members — potentially 40,000 names — was on the laptop.
“The United Conservative Party takes the integrity of its members’ data incredibly seriously,” the memo reads. “It’s why we utilize some of the strongest security systems and data protection mechanisms available to secure your personal information. We regret that despite these efforts, a low risk exists that some aspects of member data may be compromised as a result of this theft.”
After discovering the theft, the UCP said party staff contacted the Calgary police and, out of an “abundance of caution,” reported the breach to the Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner.
The party has also updated its policies to forbid the storage of party laptops in personal vehicles.
“As we review the situation further and gather more information, the Party will take further steps to mitigate any potential breaches of privacy resulting from the theft of this laptop as well as ensuring that our internal procedures are updated according to the advice received by the Calgary Police Service and Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner,” the memo stated.
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