A former T-Mobile employee has admitted his role in the illegal sale of massive volumes of customer data to marketers.
David Turley, of Birmingham, 39, pleaded guilty to 18 charges under section 55 of the Data Protection Act at Chester Crown Court on Thursday. He is yet to be sentenced.
A second former T-Mobile employee, Darren Hames, of Staffordshire, 38, will enter his pleas in relation to his alleged role in the theft on 23 November.
The illegal sale of millions of subscriber records was revealed by the Information Commissioner Christopher Graham last November, as part of a campaign for tougher sentences for data thieves.
The T-Mobile data was used to cold call and poach subscribers who were coming to the end of their contracts.
The government did not respond to the call for harsher penalties, however, and Turley faces maximum sentences that Graham said were "really stopping me doing my job".
Reacting to Turley's plea, the ICO said today: "We are pleased with this outcome and shall await the trial of Darren Hames." ®