Assistant Chief Constable Chris Todd said: “Police are continuing to investigate the loss of an officer’s laptop and notebook.

"It is believed the material fell from a moving vehicle on the foreshore stretch of the M2 motorway, on Thursday 17th August around 4.15pm.

"The laptop was immediately deactivated and has since been recovered. No personnel files were involved.

"A significant amount of the notebook has since been recovered. Some sections remain outstanding and our enquiries are continuing to establish the contents. It was confirmed that some of the outstanding pages, which contained details of some officers and staff, have not yet been recovered. We have contacted those involved to make them aware.

“42 officers and staff have been specifically identified as being affected and directly contacted by line managers and senior management. In addition, the entire Branch affected has been informed  about the circumstances of the incident.

"We are liaising with the Office of the Information Commissioner and have advised the Northern Ireland Policing Board and the Department of Justice.

"Anyone with information or who recovers any material is asked to contact police on 101."