Tolley orders independent review into MSD data portal

Social Development Minister Anne Tolley is unsatisfied at MSD's explanation regarding a privacy issue identified in one of their IT systems.

Social Development Minister Anne Tolley has ordered an independent review into the privacy breach of a system designed to collect service users' personal information.

Last week the Minister announced a gaping hole in the IT system set up by the Ministry of Social Development (MSD) to allow NGOs to submit client data had been found.

One provider was able to view another provider's folder while accessing the system, which led to it being shut down.

Before the shut down ten providers had uploaded information, although the invite had been extended to 136.

At the time Tolley told media she was "furious".

On Wednesday morning she announced she had ordered an independent review after receiving an initial report from MSD that failed to satisfy her.

"It's extremely disappointing that the report appears to raise more questions than answers on the security of the IT system and the governance of the project," Tolley said.

The review will be headed by Murray Jack, a former Deloitte consultant, supported by two privacy and IT specialists from Deloitte and PwC.

"The review will consider the circumstances which led to the technical breach, the decisions made on why the portal was used and the security steps taken, as well as the governance and management of the project," the press release from Tolley's office said.

Last week was a bad week for her and for the Government, after the Privacy Commissioner issued a scathing report into MSD's plans to ramp up its collection of data about service users - and withhold funding from social organisations who refuse to provide it.