Wednesday, 3 August 2016 - 09:30
Amsterdam sends wrong letters to some 3,000 welfare recipients
Nearly 3,000 benefit recipients living in Amsterdam recently received a letter with the wrong details over their monthly benefits - instead of containing their details, the letter contained personal information about another benefit recipient, ANP reports. The letter contained information including addresses, so-called citizen's numbers and account numbers of the person for which it was intended. The mistake was made by the company that handles the municipality's letters. It is unclear exactly how it happened. According to responsible alderman Arjan Vliegenthart, the people involved received a letter of apology and were asked to destroy the information wrongly received. The alderman could not guarantee that all did so. A spokesperson for Vliegenthart stressed that those who mean harm can do little with the information contained in the letters. The Personal Data Authority was informed about the incident. According to the office, the citizen's number in particular is "very sensitive" information, because of the risk of identity fraud. The municipality calls on those who think they were harmed by this error to report it as soon as possible. This is not the Amsterdam municipality's first administrative mistake when it comes to making payments. Late 2013 more than 9 thousand people received thousands of euros more than they should have - the municipality paid out 188 million euros instead of 1.88 million euros. Last year a total of 580 thousand incorrect payments were made.