WIRRAL Council has been rapped by the UK information watchdog after social services records containing sensitive personal family details were sent to the wrong addresses.

The town hall today has made a formal undertaking to the Information Commissioner’s Office to improve data protection practices after the cases came to light.

One case included details of a criminal offence committed by a family member.

The information was disclosed in February and April 2013 and affected two families living in the borough.

The council said the data was retrieved as soon as the mistakes were discovered, and officers reported the incident to the ICO in Spring of 2013.

Joe Blott, Wirral’s strategic director of transformation and resources, said: ‘We take these matters very seriously.

"As soon as we discovered the errors, we self-referred to the ICO and took immediate steps to discover what went wrong, and make sure we do what is necessary to ensure it doesn’t happen again.

"We have taken on board the ICO’s concerns, and have improved our data protection compliance.

"This has included training for staff with access to confidential and sensitive data, and a re-iteration of how we can and should endeavor to keep confidential information safe."