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August 24, 2010 Tuesday 6:00 AM EST
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HEADLINE: Zurich Insurance fined $3.5 million over data loss
BYLINE: Simon Kennedy
LONDON (MarketWatch) — The U.K.’s Financial Services Authority said Tuesday that it has fined the U.K. branch of Zurich Insurance PLC around 2.3 million pounds ($3.5 million) after it lost the personal details of 46,000 customers. The fine is the highest ever imposed by the FSA on a single firm for a data-security failure. The regulator said Zurich Insurance Co. South Africa (za:zsa) , which handles some data processing for the U.K. business, lost an unencrypted back-up tape, which held details of customers’ identities and bank accounts as well as, in some cases, insured assets and security arrangements. The loss could have exposed customers to the risk of burglary, though there is no evidence that the data was actually misused, the regulator said. Zurich Insurance is part of the Zurich Financial Services Group (ch:zurn) . Shares in Zurich Financial dropped 0.8% Tuesday.
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