THE disastrous leak of confidential information about the donors to anti-independence group Scotland in Union escalated into a full-blown crisis for the organisation yesterday.

Donors are said to have been “harassed” after details of their donations contained in a supposedly redacted spreadsheet leaked out on social media. Each one of them is being contacted by Scotland in Union – which is led by former Labour MP Pamela Nash – and the Electoral Commission, the latter being the source of the leak.

READ MORE: Faroe Islands delay their referendum on more independence

The Electoral Commission mistakenly allowed the list to be made public on Wednesday and The National did not publish the names.

We did confirm, however, that 168 individuals and companies had donated around £650,000 to Scotland in Union over the past three years.

The National also reported that friends of Prince William, aristocrats, bankers and landowners were all on the list, to which we can add that a man known to be a personal friend of Prince Charles is also a donor, as is a clan chief. The list was published on social media and last night Scotland in Union stated that donors had been “harassed” as a result.

It also emerged that the Electoral Commission has already reported itself to the Information Commissioner’s Office as the data originated on a computer and was accidentally made public via a website

An Electoral Commission spokesperson said: “On April 25 the commission was notified of a technical issue with the application of redactions in a Freedom of Information resp- onse published on the commission’s website.

“The redaction was ineffective and enabled access to personal information in relation to donations to the Scotland in Union party (sic – they are actually officially a non-party campaign group).

“The commission takes the management of data extremely seriously and regrets this issue. We are taking all reasonable action to minimise any harm caused and to rectify matters where we can.

“We immediately removed the response from our website and are working with Scotland in Union to ensure that the individuals affected are notified.

“The Information Commissioner’s Office has been formally notified of the breach. We are carrying out a full test of our redaction tool to understand how it occurred and will subsequently update internal procedures if required.”

A Scotland in Union spokesperson confirmed its dismay over the leak, saying: “We have still to receive a full explanation from the Electoral Commission as to why they placed private information about our supporters in the public domain and we are consulting our legal team about next steps.

“Unfortunately, we have already had instances of supporters being harassed as a result of the Electoral Commission’s breach.

“This is completely unacceptable.”