Elaine Edwards reports:
Staff at the Department of Social Protection vigorously opposed the handing over of PPS numbers – particularly of children – to Irish Water, it has emerged.
Emails released under Freedom of Information legislation show Irish Water (IW) was seeking a “data dump” from the department, including information on all children for whom child benefit was paid.
Documents also show the utility failed to engage with the department on the question of accessing the data until weeks after Irish Water started posting application forms to households in September.
Read more on Irish Times.
Not knowing what PPS numbers are, I had to look it up, and found this explanation:
Your Personal Public Service Number (PPS Number) is a unique reference number that helps you access social welfare benefits, public services and information in Ireland. State agencies that use PPS Numbers to identify individuals include the Department of Social Protection, the Revenue Commissioners and the Health Service Executive (HSE).
So yes, I would hope there would be serious pushback against a request that was not made properly and without careful consideration and documentation of how such information would be shared, stored, and retained.