In fact the Liberal Democrat Chris Huhne MP (Shadow Home Secretary) , stated “It is clear that Whitehall’s culture of carelessness about confidential data has not ended“, in an attempt to score cheap points.
The data was sent an obscure, encrypted, format, providing security through strength and obscurity, in addition to this the data was sent via TNT, a well known and respected courier.
What more could the British Council do? Data has to be moved, and so far it appears that they have just lost an obscure, and probably outdated optical disk, rather than the data. The data is actually protected and so is not lost.
They should be applauded for the efforts they have made, rather than the reverse.