Irish Media

I am trying hard to find the hidden meaning in the double e’s?

INM kept quiet on full details of data breach
Regulator left in dark over personal info trawl

Mark Tighe
April 8 2018, 12:01am, The Sunday Times

Independent News and Media (INM) failed to tell the Data Protection Commissioner (DPC) that the copying of its computer servers under the direction of former chairman Leslie Buckley involved the transfer of personal information.

INM notified the data regulator’s office of a potential data breach last August after it emerged that Buckley had authorised a British firm to access the servers without informing the company’s board or management.

The DPC quickly decided that no data breach had occurred. However, the regulator has now revealed that INM told it last August only that the issue related to the British company not having a contract.

The regulator said the newspaper group’s notification “was targeted towards an issue of off-site and on-site processing of INM data by third-party data processors without a written contract in place”.

In response to queries from The Sunday Times the DPC said: “The notification did not at that time identify any risks to data subjects arising from what was presented as a technical issue of processing without contract.”

The regulator has now sent INM a list of questions that must be answered this week as part of a scoping exercise. This followed a second breach notification from the company on March 26.

The DPC is expected to launch a “targeted investigation” into the newspaper group later this month. So far two people have contacted the regulator to express concerns that their data was breached. They have been referred back to INM.

The Office of the Director of Corporate Enforcement (ODCE) has established that Blaydon, a Denis O’Brien company, paid for the INM data to be interrogated. It has also found that the INM archive was searched for mentions of 19 “persons of interest” including Moriarty tribunal lawyers, and the company’s own executives and journalists.

In an affidavit to the High Court, Ian Drennan, director of the ODCE, said INM’s response to the data breach last year was “unsatisfactory”. He has accused the media firm, where O’Brien is the largest shareholder, of having “downplayed” the seriousness of the data interrogation.

Buckley has said he intends to “robustly defend my position against each and every allegation”. O’Brien has not commented.

Separately, the special liquidators of IBRC, the state bank that took over Anglo Irish Bank, are investigating how a former IBRC executive passed confidential bank documents to O’Brien for use in his ongoing litigation against Red Flag, a PR company accused of conspiring against the billionaire.

Tom Hunersen, former head of corporate and institutional recovery at IBRC, supplied O’Brien with two internal memos that set out details of complaints against two IBRC staff members and provided details of bank deals that had no connection with the billionaire businessman.

A letter from the liquidators to O’Brien said they were “extremely concerned” that the “clearly confidential information” had been disclosed to him.

In response to a parliamentary question, Paschal Donohoe, the finance minister, said that the special liquidators “are considering the matter further with their legal advisors”.

On Friday INM staff met Michael Doorly, the company’s chief executive. Sources at the meeting say Fionnan Sheahan, editor of the Irish Independent, made an impassioned statement calling on Doorly to let INM’s board know of the “shock, anger and disgust” of staff at the revelations about the data breach.

Sheahan said the staff and readership of INM newspapers had been badly let down by the company’s leadership.

Jim O’Callaghan, Fianna Fail’s spokesman on justice, said a High Court inspector should be appointed to INM.

“The allegation that data has been unlawfully accessed is extremely troubling and merits investigation,” said O’Callaghan. “If inspectors are appointed by the High Court there will be a thorough investigation of the allegation and the production of a report. Under section 760 of the Companies Act 2014, the High Court has considerable powers, having considered the inspectors’ report, to make whatever orders it thinks appropriate.”

Lynn Boylan, a Sinn Fein MEP, said it was time for O’Brien to explain his involvement in the data breach. “Denis O’Brien must make a public statement as to why a company, Blaydon, beneficially owned by him, paid companies to carry out
a data interrogation of the electronic records of journalists and others at INM,” she said.

“O’Brien is a man who is incredibly protective of his own privacy, yet it appears he has played a role in what has the potential to be the biggest data breach in the history of the state.

“The fact that this data breach was carried out on journalists is deeply concerning. The integrity and safety of journalists is undeniably linked to their privacy and ability to protect their sources.”

Last week Martin Coyne, a forensic IT worker employed by O’Brien to interrogate the anonymous USB key sent to him in the Red Flag case, tweeted in support to Derek Mizak, one of the IT consultants paid by Blaydon, to interrogate the INM data.

Asked if he also worked on the INM project, Coyne “couldn’t comment as that is an ongoing issue in Ireland”.

Ep 150: The crisis at Independent Newspapers – @Mickcliff of the Irish Examiner joins Eamon to talk discuss the ongoing situation surrounding an alleged data breach at Independent News & Media (INM) –

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I was very curious last weekend to hear what Brendan O’Connor himself made of his personal info being sent off to Denis O’Brien, given that BOC finds himself at the centre of one of the biggest stories in the country right now. It could be quite a professional opportunity for him to regain some relevancy. He didn’t mention it and instead had a front page satirical article about how he might run for President instead - all these silly fools running for President! It was so funny!

I find that the Sindo combination of real news and lighter content is just what I want on a Sunday afternoon, sitting by the fireplace.

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He probably took legal advice on it and was told to leave it be for the time being

I see INM shredded the backup tapes at the centre of the ODCE investigation in what they have termed a “house keeping exercise” last February.

Saw that alright. Looks like that was a serious waste of cash to get those bad sectors fixed by those 6 firms outside the jurisdiction.


There seems to have been a fair amount of INM journalists let go recently. Noticed a lot of farewell messages on Twitter over the last few weeks.

Yeah they just completed a restructure.

By “more inquiring” he means “naked propaganda”. The strong impression I get from this Bowes chap is he’s dodgy as fuck and a fantasist.

Sort of person Shinners would like.

News sites need to move to encourage engagement, this should have been done 15 years ago bu tthe prints guys fought it in practically every organisation. The Journal seemed to be doing well but the move to premium content and removing results/league tables was a terrible move for them.

There was always potential for to make that move but I think they have too many legal issues to make it viable.

Maybe someone of the TFK pretend-RA will try a new online version of An Phoblacht?

No need to be bringing auld Nordie shite down here.Whinging shower of bitter cunts.

Have a go at that again JB

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Fuck Brolly and his agenda.If I had my way,I’d build a 20’ high reinforced wall at the border and keep the cunts enclosed.

Try again bro

Jaysus, the state of this chap from the Ditch on RTE now. Wearing a retro re-creation of the Manchester United black away kit Cantona did his kung fu kick at Selhurst Park in.