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Blackbaud data breach affects homeless charity Porchlight


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A Kent-based homeless charity has admitted being affected by a huge data hack.

It's been announced that Porchlight, which has centres in Canterbury and Margate, was part of a hacking scandal that also affected the University of Kent.

Porchlight is a well-known group aiming to help the homeless and vulnerable
Porchlight is a well-known group aiming to help the homeless and vulnerable

In late July it was revealed a cybercriminal had hacked Blackbaud, a data protection software provider for more than 100 museums, charities and organisations worldwide.

The acquired information was then held for a ransom which was duly paid.

Industrial and charitable bodies then started emerging as being affected including The National Trust and Sue Ryder.

Yesterday Porchlight joined that list, sending an email to its supporters explaining what has happened.

In it Jo Dawes, the charity's director of fundraising and communications, wrote: "We have been told that some of our supporters’ data was affected including name, contact details, gift history and communication details.

The University of Kent was also impacted by the Blackbaud breach
The University of Kent was also impacted by the Blackbaud breach

"Blackbaud has confirmed to Porchlight that no credit card information or bank account details were accessed - we do not ever store these on Porchlight’s database.

"We are very sorry for the concern this may cause. As soon as we were notified, Porchlight reported the incident to the ICO (Information Commissioners Office) and Charity Commission and cooperated fully with their guidance."

Striking an optimistic tone towards the end of the email, the charity states: "Based on current information from Blackbaud we believe the risk to your data to be low.

"We are now exploring all options with Blackbaud to ensure this does not happen again.

"Blackbaud has confirmed it now has new measures in place to continue to scan for any suspicious activity and strengthened security systems to prevent future attacks."

Porchlight also said anyone feeling concerned by this news can email headoffice@porchlight.org.uk if they have questions.

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