Printing error led to confidential details being sent to colleagues in monthly pay packets.

DEVON County Council said it is investigating a ‘printing error’ that caused confidential details about colleagues’ salaries to appear on council payslips.

An unknown number of pay packets, posted last week, listed the correct employee details on the front, but another person’s information on the reverse.

The council said the embarrassing breach of data protection, known to affect staff across various departments including teachers, cleaners and waste services, was due to a printing mistake made by external printers.

One reader who contacted the Gazette but asked not to be named, said a teaching assistant (HLTA) at a school in Braunton have received details about another employee on the back of her payslip.

“It had her address etc on the front, but wrong details on the back for someone totally different.

“Talking to her work colleagues, all TAs and meal time TAs all got different ones; some were even people in the same school – awkward.”

In another reported case, it is understood that a wage slip received in error gave details of the amount a worker was having deducted from their salary to pay court fines.

Staff receiving the incorrect information have been asked to return the payslips, and new ones are being issued. The actual transfer of salaries to people’s bank accounts has not been affected.

A spokesman for the county council, said: “This level of service provided by the printing company is unacceptable. We are reviewing our contract arrangements as a matter of urgency.”

The council said it was still investigating the extent of the printing error, and so was unable to say how many staff had been affected.