Security & Fraud

British Airways Employees Say Call Center Data Not Secure

Current and former staff at British Airways, the U.K. airliner, told The Financial Times this weekend that data has been handled insecurely and has been open for potential misuse for several years.

According to a report in The Financial Times, the revelations by current and former employees at the Bremen call center in Northern Germany raise more questions about how the airline protects data security less than a year after it suffered a major data breach.

The employees at one of the airline’s largest call centers outside of the U.K. said the data was being protected on an “archaic” information technology system. That, coupled with an increase in those working at home and insufficient background checks of the staff, led to the issues in how the data of customers was handled. According to one employee, while the airline’s flexible work-at-home concept made it easier for staff to do their shifts, it also created opportunities to run afoul of the airline’s rule when it comes to data processing.

One employee told The Financial Times that there were a series of daily violations that would enable unscrupulous workers to get their hands on and steal customer data. The claims come after British Airways suffered a data breach in the summer of 2018 that resulted in the data of more than 400,000 British Airways customers getting stolen. That hurt the airline’s reputation and has impacted the confidence consumers have in the airline to keep their data secured. The commentary out of the call center staff could raise more concerns about how British Airlines protects consumers’ data. “We take the protection of our customers’ data very seriously, and we continue to invest heavily in data security. All our systems and procedures at our call centers in Bremen, and elsewhere, are regularly audited,” the airline said in response to an inquiry by The Financial Times.



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