Losing personal data took a step closer to becoming a criminal offence after the House of Lords backed a change in the law.
Peers supported an amendment to the criminal justice and immigration bill which would make it a criminal offence to carelessly release or lose personal data.
The amendment, proposed by Liberal Democrat Lady Miller, would make it an offence for anyone to "intentionally or recklessly disclose information" or "repeatedly and negligently" allow information to be disclosed.
The amendment must be sanctioned by the House of Commons before it can become part of the bill.
It follows calls by the Information Commissioner Richard Thomas for the criminalisation of reckless data loss earlier this year.
(A report from silicon.com, which is aiming to make businesses and government take data security more seriously.)