Premier Property Lawyers: Police investigate firm's IT incident – BBC News


A cyber-security incident at a conveyancing firm is being investigated by police after systems went down and house sales were delayed.
Premier Property Lawyers (PPL) based in Enderby, Leicestershire, was unable to access IT systems following the incident on 7 November.
It left thousands of buyers in limbo with transactions not being processed.
Leicestershire Police said it was "working to establish the circumstances surrounding the incident".
While the exact details around it have not been disclosed, PPL said cyber experts had been called in to resolve the issue.
However many clients are still facing delays completing their sales.
One Leicestershire buyer, who wanted to remain anonymous, said he had sold his house and was living with his brother-in-law until his new purchase completed.
"I just don't know any information at all and it's causing massive repercussions," he said.
"The house I'm buying is empty. I have even enquired about renting it until it is all sorted out. Renting my own house… it's a joke."
Jason Greenwood from Redcar, Teesside had all his belongings into a van on 9 November before he heard of the problems at PPL.
"We have some sort of movement with PPL now being able to access some files and start to look at those clients who had dates agreed," he said,
"I'm still living at my parents' house and it's looking as though I'll move on Monday.
"The communications aren't the best from PPL and we are having to chase constantly about what is happening."
A statement from The Simplify Group which owns PPL and My Home Move in Leicester, said it had notified the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) and other relevant authorities "at the earliest opportunity… and remain in contact with them as the situation progresses".
It said it was not aware that any client personal data had been compromised and staff were working around the clock to work through the backlog.
The spokesman added: "We would stress that we are very conscious of the responsibility we have to our clients and we continue to invest in security measures to mitigate the growing range of risks faced by businesses.
"Our teams have worked non-stop with third party experts to contain the incident, get our systems operational and minimise the disruption for home movers.
"We can assure you that all money held by us is safe and secure and is held in an entirely separate system, with multiple protections, unaffected by the incident."
The firm said staff were resuming work on cases "on a carefully prioritised basis, focused on helping our clients to move as soon as possible".
"We are continuing to actively contact clients to update them on the situation and how our colleagues can help support their moves as they get more access to restored systems," it added.
Nichola Hulme , 33, from Creswell, Derbyshire said "life is on hold" as she and her partner await information on their move.
The mother-of-two had hoped to complete on 12 November but their buyer pulled out at the last minute, and so their purchase was now also on hold.
"Our sale fell through because of the lack of communication from them [PPL] since the beginning and the communication since the outage has got even worse," she said,
"We are now at the bottom of their priority list so we could be waiting weeks.
"But we haven't got weeks. We are in real danger of losing the house we have waited six months for.
"They [PPL] won't even say exactly what's happened. All they told me is that all their servers are down and all their emails and phones are down. There's no way to contact them."
Geoff Davvis, who has been undergoing cancer treatment, was also unable to complete his house move on 12 November and said he was still waiting for news.
The 63-year-old from Rhyl, Denbighshire, said the situation, combined with daily radiotherapy and chemotherapy pills, had been "a nightmare".
Leicestershire Police said: "[We have] received a report of a security incident and officers are working with the victim to establish the circumstances surrounding the incident."
Follow BBC East Midlands on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. Send your story ideas to
Cyber-security breach still delaying house sales
House sales halted by cyber-security breach
Amphibious machine brought in to dredge sideponds at Foxton Locks
World-renowned saxophonist comes to the Harborough district
‘We have been dumped like garbage’
Rescue cat finds her forever home with calves in a cowshed
Information about BBC links to other news sites
Further unrest in Netherlands amid Covid protests
Fireworks and chaos as Dutch Covid riots continue. Video
WTA chief casts doubt on Chinese player Peng video
Why did this mum take her children to the IS capital?
Beaten and handcuffed for wearing a woman's outfit
Barcelona tackles wild boar 'invasion' Video
The school building futures through food. Video
Are countries allowed to turn away asylum seekers?
When Hindus and Muslims joined hands to riot
The students taking the 'world's hardest' exams. Video
Lin-Manuel Miranda on his new film's 'dirty secret'
Chile voters go to polls amid deep divisions
'We said we’d never talk about it again'
How a night out in Glasgow ended in disaster
The story of an intense secret affair
Are Marianne and Connell meant to be together?
© 2021 BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read about our approach to external linking.



Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here