Confirmation the programme breaches privacy regulations follows reports of patients’ confidential data being shared online.
The government has admitted its contact tracing programme is unlawful in a legal letter which confirms it has been running in breach of data protection laws since it was launched in May.
Confirmation the programme failed to adhere to privacy regulations comes as Sky News can reveal that contractors working for NHS Test and Trace have been told they may be fired following reports of dozens of staff sharing patients’ confidential data on social media.
According to the legal letter, the government did not conduct a data privacy impact assessment (DPIA) which is required to ensure that breaches of patients’ information don’t take place.
The letter was sent in response to a legal challenge brought by Open Rights Group (ORG) against the government for failing to confirm whether it had met the required safeguards for the programme.