Vulnerable people database breaches Data Protection Act

BBC Scotland has revealed that over 400,000 ‘vulnerable’ people have been placed on a police database that lacks an information removal policy.

Police Scotland said that the database, which lists people considered to be at risk of future harm, allows its officers to collate information about vulnerable adults and children and enable ‘real opportunities’ to prevent future crime.

However, the Information Commissioner has warned that the database breaches the Data Protection Act because it lacks an information removal policy, a problem which the force said it was working hard to rectify.

The force said it did not always tell people how it was recording, managing and sharing their information - leaving many people unaware that they are on the list.

Figures obtained by the BBC show that there are currently 412,000 adults and children on the Vulnerable Person Database (VPD), which represents approximately one person in every 13 in Scotland. To highlight the increase in figures on the database, there were 302,346 names on the system in February 2016.

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