Tories prob­ing ex-can­di­date, 407 data breach link


Doug Ford said Thurs­day his party is look­ing into al­le­ga­tions that a Pro­gres­sive Con­ser­va­tive can­di­date who has now re­signed was in­volved in an al­leged theft of cus­tomer data at a toll high­way op­er­a­tor — a mat­ter be­ing in­ves­ti­gated by po­lice. Tory can­di­date Sim­mer Sandhu, who was run­ning in the rid­ing of Bramp­ton East, abruptly re­signed Wed­nes­day night, cit­ing un­spec­i­fied al­le­ga­tions about his work life and nom­i­na­tion campaign that he de­nies. His res­ig­na­tion came shortly af­ter the 407 Ex­press Toll Route is­sued a state­ment say­ing it had no­ti­fied po­lice, the fed­eral pri­vacy com­mis­sioner and the On­tario Min­istry of Trans­porta­tion about what it called an “in­ter­nal theft of cus­tomer data.” The com­pany con­firmed Sandhu was a for­mer em­ployee. Ford said he acted “im­me­di­ately” to deal with Sandhu.

“I’ve al­ways made im­me­di­ate de­ci­sions, I im­me­di­ately made the de­ci­sion. We ac­cepted (Sandhu’s) res­ig­na­tion,” he said in Cam­bridge, Ont., while rolling out a prom­ise to cut small busi­ness taxes by 8.7 per cent. Ford was also asked if al­legedly stolen 407 ETR cus­tomer data may have been used by some can­di­dates to win nom­i­na­tion races. “Our party is look­ing into this,” Ford said, adding that ques­tions on other can­di­dates would have to be di­rected to them.

His spokes­woman later added that the party had asked the 407 for in­for­ma­tion and “they would not con­firm nor deny a data breach had oc­curred.” Ford’s ri­vals said the Tory leader had much to an­swer for.

The New Democrats in par­tic­u­lar called on the prov­ince’s Chief Elec­toral Of­fi­cer to in­ves­ti­gate the al­leged theft and de­ter­mine if any of the data was used by Tory can­di­dates. “This data, al­leged to have been taken from 407 ETR, may have been used by can­di­dates to fur­ther their elec­toral suc­cess,” said NDP pro­vin­cial sec­re­tary Karla Web­ber-Gal­lagher. “This is a vi­o­la­tion of the laws of On­tario that gov­ern how per­sonal, pri­vate in­for­ma­tion is col­lected and used.”

The 407 ETR said the per­sonal in­for­ma­tion of roughly 60,000 peo­ple was stolen from its of­fices “some time over the past 12 months.” A mem­ber of the pub­lic re­ported the al­leged theft to the com­pany last Thurs­day, said spokesman Kevin Sack. Sack con­firmed that Sandhu worked in one of the com­pany’s ac­count­ing de­part­ments but left the firm in Feb­ru­ary.

He could not say if Sandhu’s de­par­ture was linked to the al­leged theft. Bob Nichols, spokesman for the Min­istry of Trans­porta­tion, said the mat­ter is now the sub­ject of an ac­tive po­lice in­ves­ti­ga­tion, a fact con­firmed by York re­gional po­lice.


Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Canada

© PressReader. All rights reserved.