Information Commissioner’s Office raided Stephen Siddell’s home following a tip off from the rental company

A former Enterprise Rent-a-Car manager has been prosecuted by the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) for stealing the records of almost 2,000 customers to sell on to a claims management company (CMC).

After receiving the records, the CMC contacted many of the individuals who had been in car accidents about potential personal injury claims. Neither Enterprise Rent-a-Car nor its customers had given permission for their information to be passed on.

During its investigation, the ICO discovered that between 14 October 2011 and 4 November 2011, Siddell had printed the details of more than 1,000 people.

Stephen Siddell appeared at Wirral Magistrates Court yesterday where he was fined £500, ordered to pay a £50 victim surcharge and £264.08 in prosecution costs.

ICO head of enforcement Stephen Eckersley, said: “This man was motivated by greed. Stephen Siddell betrayed his employer and exploited over 1,900 customers for personal gain.

“Staff at Enterprise Rent-a-Car acted swiftly in notifying us of their concerns and we were then able to protect other potential victims.

“Data theft is not a victimless crime and many of the people targeted by Siddell and the claims management company will have received nuisance calls offering to pursue a personal injury claim.

“Siddell was happy to exploit people after they had recently had an accident, when they may have already been suffering mentally and physically. He is now facing the consequences of his crimes.”

Siddell’s theft was discovered after the ICO raided a CMC based in Liverpool based on information received from Enterprise Rent-a-Car. The rental company’s suspicions had been raised after its security systems showed an irregularity.

The raid resulted in more than 500 records being recovered, relating to car hire arranged by Enterprise Rent-a-Car on behalf of insurance companies, whose customers had been involved in a recent accident.

The records were traced to Siddell, who had used his position as the manager of the rental firm’s Southport branch to print the customers’ details.

The claims management company involved has not been named because it is under investigation by the ICO.