Within days of Unison’s pension dispute ballot closing, thousands of Unison members received a further email asking them to update their membership records. Spotted immediately as not an official email from Unison as the email address was wrong, the scam was tracked back to Hungary.
Now the investigation begins: who could access thousands of Unison members’ email addresses; who thought of setting up the recipient base in Hungary; who would benefit from the fraud and scam? If the integrity of the ballot could be undermined then legal challenges would be forthcoming. However the indication from a number of employers is that a blind eye has been turned to minor balloting errors, e.g. wrong head office addresses, wrong or changed chief executives etc.
So what is this – a scam to harvest personal details or an intelligence service-based intervention to undermine the union’s data integrity? An intervention to cast doubts over the union’s democratic procedures or perhaps to fuel the conspiracy theorists if the ballot return exceeds or fails to exceed expectations? ■