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Leeds Beckett University Data Breach Compensation Claims Guide – How Much Compensation Can I Claim? – Amounts For Leeds Beckett University Data Breach

Breaches Of Data Protection At Leeds Beckett University

Although this article explains when compensation could be claimed following data breaches at Leeds Beckett University, our information could help you understand how to pursue a claim against other establishments as well.

There is no doubt that any university would struggle to function if they couldn’t retain personal information about its students or staff. However, data privacy laws mean that information has to be treated very carefully to prevent it from being lost or stolen.

Unless you don’t read the news at all, you have probably heard of the General Data Protection Regulation (or the GDPR). It came into effect when The Data Protection Act 2018 was enacted by parliament. Now that the GDPR has been launched, you have a lot more say over how your personal information is used. And this could influence your data breach compensation claims.

Organisations (or data controllers) must tell you when they’ll use it and ask for permission first. Individuals (or data subjects) whose data is leaked in a security breach could seek compensation for any harm caused. Additionally, it is possible for the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) to step in and investigate what happened.

Leeds Beckett University data breach claims guide

Leeds Beckett University data breach claims guide

We are here to help you if you’re considering starting a claim. Our advisors can conduct a no-obligation telephone consultation to review your case and explain your options. If the case seems strong enough, we could pair you with one of our specialist solicitors. To make the process easier, any claim that is accepted will benefit from our No Win No Fee service.

Please get in touch today on 0800 073 8804 if you are ready to begin. If you need more information before calling, please read on.

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A Guide On Claims For Data Breaches At Leeds Beckett University

The GDPR has affected the way many things are done these days. It doesn’t just affect the education sector either. You will probably see information about the GDPR when booking a holiday, visiting your GP, shopping online, reading blogs and applying for finance. When you carry out any of these tasks, you’ll probably need to tick a box or press an OK button to confirm you’ve read a statement on how your data will be used.

The reason these changes have happened is that the GDPR stipulates that data subjects must be told when their data is used, stored or shared, and they need to grant permission to the data controller to do so.

When your preferences have been communicated, the data controller must stick to them and not allow your information to be used in any other way. Also, they must keep your data safe. Failure to do so could result in a massive fine from the ICO. On top of that, it might be possible for you to seek compensation.

As with most compensation claims, there are time limits that must be stuck to. Mostly, data breach claims are limited to a 6-year limitation period. Claims centring around breaches of human rights will be limited to 1-year, though. Our advice is that many people find it easier to discuss the effects of a personal data breach the sooner they begin their claim. Furthermore, your solicitor may find it easier to get hold of the evidence to support your case.

We can help you start a claim when you’re ready. Therefore, please feel free to call our advice line. If you’re not quite ready to begin, you can ask any questions to help clarify matters.

What Is A Data Breach At Leeds Beckett University?

It is a fair assumption that many data breaches are caused by cybercriminals using methods like keylogging, phishing emails, malware, spyware, ransomware and other viruses. However, while those methods are common in this digital age, the GDPR also covers other types of data too. As an example, if a receptionist’s computer was visible to people in a waiting area, and personally identifiable information is left on the screen, then a data breach could have taken place.

The way in which the GDPR defines such breaches is where a security issue results in the personal information being disclosed, destroyed, altered, lost or accessed by unauthorised parties. ICO investigations can be launched for data breaches regardless of whether they were caused by illegal, deliberate or accidental acts.

Data controllers are legally bound to investigate any data breach that occurs involving their systems. If the investigation highlights that a data subject might be at risk, then they need to be told. They should be informed what information was exposed, how the breach occurred and when the event took place. At the same time, the investigation needs to be referred to the ICO.

Would you like us to assess whether you’re eligible to claim for a university data breach? If so, please get in touch with our specialist advisors today.

University GDPR Compliance

Some legal documents are difficult to understand if you are specially trained. However, the GDPR is easier to understand because it has clear definitions of the different roles and responsibilities for anybody involved in processing personal data. For instance, data controllers, such as universities, need to abide by the following principles:

  • Telling the data subject about the reason their information is required.
  • Only using data processing methods which are legal, fair and obvious.
  • Collecting the least amount of information possible to fulfil their requirements.
  • Never storing personal information for any longer than is required.
  • Using confidential and secure data processing procedures.
  • Providing a means to allow personally identifiable information to be updated.

When we say ‘personally identifiable information’ we mean any data that is recorded that might help identify a data subject. Such information might include names, enrolment numbers, staff ID numbers, addresses, contact numbers or email addresses. Furthermore, details about some protected characteristics could indirectly identify somebody such as their race, age, sexual orientation or disability.

To find out whether you have a valid university data breach claim, please contact our team today.

How Do I Know If My Data Privacy Has Been Breached?

As mentioned earlier, you should be informed by a data controller if your personal information has been accessed following a security breach. One such case where many universities had to contact their alumni, students and staff was when Blackbaud, a software supplier, had their cloud-based servers hacked.

The event took place in May 2020 when the backup services were accessed illegally. An investigation by Blackbaud identified that a portion of data had been downloaded and it was subsequently issued with a ransom request from the hackers.

As required, Blackbaud informed any customers who were at risk of being harmed by the breach who subsequently contacted their students and others involved.

Unusually, and against law enforcement advice, Blackbaud managed to get the stolen data destroyed by paying the hacker’s ransom.

News article: https://www.bbc.com/news/technology-53528329

We could help you claim if you can prove you have been affected by this or any other university data breach. Please let a member of our team know how you have been harmed and they will consider your case for free.

How Many Universities In The UK Have Been Affected By Data Breaches?

Even with the case study we presented in the previous section, you might be wondering if university data breaches are really all that common.

To demonstrate the rise in numbers, we’re going to provide statistics from a recent study that was commissioned by an IT security company. The responses provided by 86 universities might appear alarming. They include:

  • Almost half of the staff at universities (46%) had been given no data security training within the last 12-months.
  • Just 51% of students were given similar training proactively. That said, 37% of the respondents also said they give out information when asked.
  • A massive 54% of universities had referred themselves to the ICO in the last year following data breaches.
  • 27% admitted they’d never paid for an external penetration test of their network infrastructure.
  • Staff training budgets for data awareness guidance were on average just £7,529.

In the section that follows, we are going to show some basic steps that could help stop data security breaches from happening in the future. Should you require any further details on how we could help you make a claim, please use the number above to get in touch.

Cyber Crime Affecting University Data Privacy

As we have shown within the previous two sections, cybercrime relating to university data breaches seems to be on the rise. While we don’t profess to be data security experts, there are some measures which could help prevent security breaches in the future. They include:

  • Providing adequate data security training for all members of staff and students.
  • Asking an IT security company to conduct penetration tests to help identify data security problems before they are spotted by criminals.
  • Encrypting devices to make their disks unreadable if they are stolen or lost.
  • Carrying out reviews of data protection policies regularly.
  • Applying all of the latest software patches to any device which connects to the university’s network.

As with any security measure, the initial cost can be a barrier. However, when you consider universities sometimes retain sensitive information relating to research projects as well as personal information regarding staff and students, that investment could prevent a lot of harm in the future.

What Compensation Am I Entitled To Claim?

It would be nice if, following a personal data breach, you could simply tell the defendant how much compensation you wanted. However, it’s not that easy! Any claim must show how you’ve suffered and needs to be backed up by evidence. Also, as you are only allowed to make one claim, every aspect of your suffering, including any that might occur in the future, needs to be considered.

One part of a claim considers material damages. This is used to reimburse any financial losses you have suffered. Non-material damages are calculated to compensate for any pain, suffering and loss of amenity the data breach has caused you.

For material damages, the calculation will start with the amount of money that you have already lost. After that, you’ll need to work out if there any losses that might occur in the future. For instance, your personal information may have been stolen and sold by cybercriminals and used to conduct identity theft. It those actions have caused your credit file to suffer, you might find that it costs you more in the future to obtain products like mortgages or credit cards.

When claiming for non-material damages, you’ll start with any psychological injuries which have already been diagnosed such as stress or anxiety. In a similar way to above, as part of the claim, a medical specialist may be used to try and ascertain whether you’ll continue to suffer in the future. For instance, anxiety could cause you problems relating to trusting friends and family, being able to work or coping with life generally.

If you work with Legal Expert, one of our experienced lawyers could work with you to try and ensure that no element of your suffering is missed from your claim. Therefore, why not reach out to us today for a free assessment of your case?

Compensation Calculator For Data Breaches At Leeds Beckett University

Next up, we are going to review what amounts of compensation could be paid following a data protection breach. As each case is unique, we will only offer a personalised compensation estimate after your claim has been assessed by a solicitor. However, in the table that follows, we have listed some relevant injuries and compensation amounts for your information.

In the Court of Appeal, it was decided that you are able to claim compensation for psychological injuries regardless of whether you’ve suffered financially or not. Also, it was determined that the amounts awarded should match those paid in personal injury cases.

Case: Vidal-Hall and others v Google Inc [2015]

The details in our table come from the Judicial College Guidelines, a document used by legal professionals when determining settlement figures.

Injury TypeSeverity LevelCompensation RangeFurther Details
Psychiatric Damage Severe£51,460 - £108,620A very poor prognosis will be provided in this category as the claimant will be vulnerable, treatment won't help and coping with work, life, education and relationships will be very difficult
Psychiatric Damage Moderate£5,500 to £17,900The claimant will suffer similarly to above but their prognosis will be more optimistic.
Psychiatric Damage Less SevereUp to £5,500Slight and minor symptoms with a full recovery in a short space of time.
PTSDSevere£56,180 to £94,470The claimant will have permanent PTSD symptoms that prevent them from functioning anywhere near pre-trauma levels and they won't be able to return to work.
PTSDModerate£7,680 to £21,730In this category, any serious symptoms of PTSD will have been resolved. If less serious symptoms persist, they won't be grossly disabling.

The main factor used to determine the settlement level is the severity of your injury. To help establish that, you will need to visit an independent medical specialist, based locally, during the claims process.

At the meeting, your medical notes will be considered, and you will be questioned about the impact of your injuries. At the end of the meeting, a report will be written and sent on to your solicitor. Due to the importance of this report in ascertaining how serious your injuries are, a medical assessment is required in all cases.

How Does The Data Breach Claims Process Work?

Hopefully, by now, you have decided if you’re going to make a claim for the harm caused by a university data breach. If you are, you may now want to start your search for a solicitor.

Rather than looking for recommendations, searching in your local area or reading online reviews, you could make your search easier by calling our free advice line.

We start by answering any questions you may have. Then your claim will be reviewed, without obligation, in a telephone consultation. After you’ve received free legal advice, you could be connected with one of our data breach solicitors if your claim has good grounds.

They’ll start by explaining any complex legal terms, answering any questions, and they’ll provide updates as your case progresses. Without question, your solicitor will always look to secure the maximum compensation available in your case.

Why not save yourself some time and call Legal Expert’s advice line today?

No Win No Fee Claims For Data Breaches At Leeds Beckett University

If you’re sat there thinking, “I’d love to make a claim, but I’m worried about losing money”, then you can relax. We know that financial risk puts people off so we lower it by working on a No Win No Fee basis for all claims we take on. That also makes the whole process less stressful too.

At the start of your claim, a solicitor will review everything to check that it appears feasible. If they are happy to continue, you’ll be given a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA) to review. Your CFA will describe how your claim will be handled. In addition, it will show that:

  • No upfront charges will be made which means the case can begin right away.
  • There will be no charges or solicitor’s fees billed to you while the case continues.
  • If your claim is unsuccessful, you’ll not be charged any of your solicitor’s fees.

In cases where there is a positive outcome, a small portion of the compensation awarded will be retained by your solicitor to cover their costs. The percentage you’ll pay as a ‘success fee’ will be defined clearly in the CFA. Just so you know, success fees are legally capped.

If you’d like us to help you make your personal data breach claim, please call our team today for free advice on your options.

Talk To Us About Your Case

You are nearly at the end of this university data breach guide. If you’re now ready to claim for the harm caused by a data privacy breach, and you would like Legal Expert to help you, here are the best ways to contact us:

To ensure we don’t waste your time, Legal Expert will always be honest about the chances of winning your case. In your no-obligation consultation, a specialist will review what’s happened, look at any evidence and provide free claims advice.

Should your claim appear strong enough, you could be partnered with one of our specialist solicitors. If they take your case on, they will work for you on a No Win No Fee basis.

Resources For Cases Of Breaches In Data Protection

Thanks for reading until the end of this article regarding data breaches by Leeds Beckett University. We have already provided a lot of the information you’ll need to start a claim. Therefore, in this section, we’ll concentrate on providing you with resources that you may wish to refer to during your claim. Further to that, we have added some more of our guides relating to other claims we could help with.

Information Compliance At Leeds Beckett University – The data privacy and data protection policies of the university.

Limiting How Your Data Is Used – Details of when you can tell organisations how you want your data to be processed.

Freedom Of Information Requests – Government advice on making an FOI request.

Optician Negligence Claims – Details on when you could claim for suffering caused by a negligent optician.

Tenant Deposit Compensation – Advice on claiming if you have lost money because a landlord has broken the rules.

Incorrect Medication Claims – Information on starting a claim because you’ve become ill after being given the wrong medication.

Other Useful Compensation Guides

For any further information, please contact our advice line today. Thank you for reading our guide to data breaches by Leeds Beckett University.


Guide by Hambridge

Edited by Billing

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