Data protection error in the Trade Register’s information service Virre; personal details of 144 persons unintentionally shown to customers

Through Virre information service, which contains the Finnish Patent and Registration Office’s (PRH) Trade Register details, personal details of 144 persons or details on beneficial owners of companies have been unintentionally shown to customers, who have used our information services to search for Trade Register notifications using the rapid search function of the service. Personal or beneficial owner details have appeared in such Trade Register notification documents that the service should not have shown to customers. These documents included among others Trade Register extracts, personal data forms, in some cases passport copies and in one case supervision documents.

A software error caused the problem.

The error had started 16 June 2020 while installing a new function and it was detected during the afternoon of 6 July 2020. The service was immediately shut down and the display of documents including personal details ended instantly. The error was fixed 8 July 2020.

The PRH will contact the persons subjected to the unintentional display of details.

The PRH has informed the Data Protection Ombudsman about the incident.

The PRH has accurate procedures and agreements on how to handle and send personal details in the Trade Register and how to use the information services. The Trade Register contains personal details of approximately 1.6 million people, and every day we send thousands of business details to contract customers and other customers through our information services. Some of our Trade Register information service customers, such as authorities, are entitled to receive details including personal identity codes of persons responsible for companies, some of them are not.

In general, the Trade Register details are public information except for the personal identity codes of persons responsible of companies.

We apologise for this inconvenience.

For more information, please contact:
Eero Mantere
Deputy Director General
Finnish Patent and Registration Office (PRH)
Tel. +358 29 509 5511

Antti Kovalainen
Head of Unit
Enterprises and Corporations
Finnish Patent and Registration Office (PRH)
Tel. +358 29 509 5243

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Latest update 15.07.2020