British Transport Police were at Thurston railway station last week to assist Greater Anglia in carrying out a revenue operation.
A number of students travelling from Elmswell to Thurston were among rail passengers asked to pay their fare and disclose personal information, including their name, age, address and signature.
Laura Moor, whose 14-year-old daughter was stopped, said despite carrying money to pay for her journey, because there was no ticket machine at Elmswell station and the train conductor did not have sufficient time between stops to collect every fare, her daughter was unable to buy a ticket before arriving in Thurston.
She said: “I totally agree with them having to pay but what I don’t understand is why they had to give over their personal details.
“They actually felt quite intimidated because they’re only 14. A lot of them are quite naive and we spend years telling them not to give out this or that. If these were policemen in uniform it may have been different but they weren’t.”
“You can do so much with that personal information, it’s quite scary,” she added.
A Greater Anglia spokeswoman said: “We carry out revenue protection exercises at our stations in conjunction with the BTP, in taking a proactive approach to help ensure that all passengers are travelling with a valid ticket.
“Any personal information collected through these exercises is treated as confidential, and would only be used for any subsequent follow up with the individual.”
She added that Greater Anglia was ‘always happy’ to provide advice on the best travel options to schools and colleges, as well as details on scholar season tickets offering discounted travel.
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