Passport Data Breach Compensation Claims

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Can I Claim Compensation For A Passport Data Breach?

Last Updated 5th March 2024. If you’ve suffered due to a passport data breach, you could be eligible to claim compensation. This could include if there is a data breach incident during the renewal of your passport. 

passport data breach

A guide on what you could do following a passport data breach

It is important to note that you can only claim if you suffered some form of material or non-material damage. Material damage entails any financial loss you may have experienced due to the data breach. You could claim for non-material damage if the data breach caused you any psychological harm

The organisation that was handling your personal data should also have exhibited positive wrongful conduct that caused the data breach.

Keep reading to find out more about passport data breach claims. Alternatively, contact our team of advisors at any time for free legal guidance about your claim. If our advisors think your case could be successful, they can connect you with one of our data breach solicitors.

Select A Section

  1. What Is A Passport Data Breach?
  2. How Do You Check If You Were Affected By A Passport Data Breach?
  3. Passport Numbers – What Can Someone Do With Your Passport Number?
  4. Is There A Responsibility To Record Lost Documents?
  5. Compensation For A Breach Of Data Protection – Passport Data Breach Claims
  6. Start Your No Win No Fee Passport Data Breach Claim Now

What Is A Passport Data Breach?

A passport data breach could be a breach that has involved your passport or passport details in some way. It could also include if there is a data security incident at the HM Passport Office. 

For example, suppose an organisation had your details because you were in the process of renewing your passport. If your personal data was stolen because it was left out in the wrong place, and you were harmed in some way as a result, you could potentially claim compensation. 

The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) is the UK’s independent body that upholds information rights. According to their definition, a personal data breach is a breach of security that leads to the loss, unlawful destruction, alteration, access to, or unauthorised disclosure of, personal data. These could be accidental or deliberate and unlawful incidents, such as cybercrime. 

To be eligible to make a data breach claim, you must prove that:

  • A data breach did occur
  • You were harmed in some way, financially or psychologically
  • The breach occurred due to an organisation’s positive wrongful conduct

How Do You Check If You Were Affected By A Passport Data Breach?

Sometimes, if a data breach occurs, you may be notified by the faulting party. If they are aware of the breach and know it would somehow affect your rights and freedoms, they are obligated to inform you of it without unreasonable delay. They also must report the incident to the ICO within 72 hours. 

You may also discover your passport data breach by noticing the consequences. For example, if your passport details were taken by someone who wanted to steal your identity to access your bank account, you may notice a sudden loss of funds. 

Contact our advisors today to find out more about how you could claim if you were affected by a data breach. 

Passport Numbers – What Can Someone Do With Your Passport Number?

Article 4 of the UK General Data Protection Regulation (UK GDPR) defines personal data as any information relating to an identified or identifiable natural person. This includes information that can be used to identify a data subject directly or indirectly. The UK GDPR along with the Data Protection Act 2018 are the key pieces of legislation that protect personal data.

Personal data includes your name, email address and passport number. In addition to the passport number, your passport data will include your name and date of birth. It’ll also contain biometric information. Biometric data is given additional protections under the UK GDPR due to its sensitivity.

If you want to know what can someone do with your passport number in the UK, they can use it to identify you. Once personal data is breached, the data subject is at risk of financial and emotional harm.

Call our advisors if you would like to know more about how to start a data protection breach claim.

Is There A Responsibility To Record Lost Documents?

As mentioned, if there is a data breach that infringes on the freedoms or rights of the data subject (you), the organisation must report the breach to the ICO within 72 hours. 

If your passport or passport details are lost or stolen, this could potentially affect your freedom or rights, so an organisation should report a passport data breach to the ICO. Organisations such as the HM Passport Office may also record the loss on a security log. 

Compensation For A Breach Of Data Protection – Passport Data Breach Claims

Compensation for a breach of data protection can consist of up to two heads: non-material damage compensation, and material damage compensation.

Non-material damage compensation addresses the psychological injuries caused by the personal data breach. For example, if you suffer from anxiety, depression, or PTSD as a result, these could be covered under non-material damage compensation.

Below, you can find some examples of potential non-material damage compensation taken from the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG). This is a document that helps solicitors evaluate personal data breach claims by providing guideline settlement awards.

Edit
Injury Severity Amount Notes
Psychiatric Severe £54,830 to £115,730 Symptoms will seriously affect all areas of life. This includes education, work and relationships. The claimant may never recover to a pre-trauma level.
Psychiatric Moderately Severe £19,070 to £54,830 Claimant will experience difficulties with relationships, education, general life, activities. However, there will be a good prognosis for recovery.
Psychiatric Moderate £5,860 to £19,070

 

There will have been marked improvement by the trial. The prognosis for recovery will be positive.
Psychiatric Less Severe £1,540 to £5,860 Compensation will depend on how long the symptoms lasted and how much sleep and daily activities were impacted.
PTSD Severe £59,860 to £100,670 All aspects of life, including sleep, work, daily activities, relationships and education will be permanently and negatively effected.
PTSD Moderately Severe £23,150 to £59,860 The claimant may still suffer some serious symptoms. However, the prognosis for recovery will be more optimistic.
PTSD Moderate £8,180 to £23,150 Claimant will have already made a fair recovery. Any lasting symptoms will not be disabling.
PTSD Less Severe £3,950 to £8,180 After 1-2 years, any lasting symptoms will be minor and not disabling.

Some data breach compensation amounts also include material damage compensation. This covers the financial impacts of the breach, such as:

  • Damage to your credit score
  • Fraudulent purchases on your credit card
  • Illegal withdrawals from your bank accounts
  • Debt accrued in your name

In order to claim under this head, you must be able to provide evidence of your losses. As such, it can be a good idea to keep any bank statements or credit card bills that are relevant to your personal data breach claim.

Contact our team today to find out how one of solicitors could help you claim compensation.

Start Your No Win No Fee Passport Data Breach Claim Now

You don’t need to hire legal representation to start a claim, but we always recommend it. Hiring a lawyer could give you a better chance for success, as they will have an intimate understanding of the claims process and guide you through every step. However, you may be concerned about the costs of hiring a data breach lawyer. 

Our solicitors can offer their services on a No Win No Fee basis. What could this mean for you?

  • Not having to pay your solicitor their fee upfront or during the claims process
  • Your solicitor deducting a legally capped success fee only if your claim succeeds
  • Paying nothing for your solicitor’s work if your claim does not succeed

This type of agreement could benefit you if you have suffered material damages due to the data breach. If this sounds appealing to you, contact us today to find out more. Our team of advisors are available 24/7 to offer free legal advice personalised to your claim. If they think your case could be successful, they can connect you with one of our solicitors who can help you start a data breach claim today. 

Government And Local Authority Data Breach Claim Resources

We hope you found this article about passport data breach claims helpful. For further helpful resources, please see below. 

Post Office Data Breach Claims – Learn how to claim compensation if you were affected by a Post Office data breach. 

Claim for Sending a Fax to the Wrong Person – Find out how to claim if a fax being sent to the wrong person caused a breach of your data. 

Am I Eligible to Claim Compensation for Stress After a Data Breach? – Our article explains if you could claim for stress caused by a data breach. 

Data Breach Guidance – The National Cyber Security Centre offers guidance on what a data breach could be. 

Cyber Security Breaches Survey 2021 – Recent findings on cyber security incidents within businesses. 

Make a Data Protection Complaint – Government guidance on making a data protection complaint. 

Please get in touch if you have any further questions about passport data breach claims. 

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Written by Morrissey

Edited by Victorine

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    • Patrick Mallon

      Patrick is a Grade A solicitor having qualified in 2005. He's an an expert in accident at work and public liability claims and is currently our head of the EL/PL department. Get in touch today for free to see how we can help you.

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