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My Personal Data Has Been Lost After A Breach, What Are My Rights?

What Are My Rights If My Personal Data Has Been Lost In A Data Breach?

Has your personal data has been breached through no fault of your own? Did you know that you could be entitled to data breach compensation for any damage caused? From financial losses that you’ve experienced as a result of your data breach to any mental harm that you’ve suffered, this could be compensated as part of a data breach claim.

Personal data breach what are my rights guide

Personal data breach what are my rights guide

Providing that someone else’s failings were responsible for your data breach, you could be able to make a claim against them. This article aims to help you understand your rights in this situation and offers expert advice on how to secure the compensation that you deserve.

So, if you’d like to learn more about data breach claims, please continue reading our guide.

Alternatively, you could save yourself the hassle and reach out to our team at Legal Expert today. One of our specialist advisors can give you a free assessment of your circumstances to help establish whether you have a claim and how much compensation you could be entitled to receive for your suffering. In addition, they can connect you with one of our expert solicitors to handle your case on a No Win No Fee basis.

Our advisors are available 24/7, so whether you’d like to start your claim or simply get some legal advice on your data breach, please don’t hesitate to get in touch:

Select A Section

  1. A Guide To Your Rights After Your Personal Data Has Been Lost After A Breach
  2. What Is A Breach Of Your Personal Data?
  3. What Personal Data Could Organisations Hold On Me?
  4. What Steps Must A Company Take To Uphold Your Rights?
  5. What Steps Could You Take If Your Data Is Lost In A Data Breach?
  6. Do You Have The Right To Complain to The Party Who Lost Your Data?
  7. Do You Have The Right To Complain To The ICO?
  8. Do You Have The Right To Take Your Case To The Courts?
  9. Do You Have The Right To Seek Arbitration?
  10. How A Data Breach Claim Could Compensate You
  11. Calculating Compensation For Personal Data Which Has Been Lost After A Breach
  12. No Win No Fee Claims If Personal Data Has Been Lost After A Breach
  13. Start Your Claim
  14. Essential Data Breach Claim Resources

A Guide To Your Rights After Your Personal Data Has Been Lost After A Breach

As this article aims to help you understand your rights if you find that your personal data has been breached, we’ll start by ensuring that you’re familiar with some key definitions. These include explaining what we mean when we refer to terms like data and data breach, as well as providing some relevant principles of data protection practices established in UK law that you should know about.

To help illustrate how a data breach could happen, we’ll provide some examples of why different bodies may collect your data and how they may use it in accordance with their duty of care. In addition, we’ll present some common causes of data breaches, ranging from human errors to cyberattacks.

Next, we’ll walk you through the typical process of making a data breach claim, from reporting your situation to the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), calculating how much compensation you could be entitled to and finding the best legal help to ensure you receive the compensation that you deserve.

To finish, we’ll provide some additional resources to help you with your data breach claim. If you have any questions about the information presented in this article or you’d like to receive a free assessment of your circumstances, please get in touch with our team at Legal Expert today. Why not have one of our solicitors handle your claim for you so you can focus on getting your life back on track?

It’s important that you’re aware of the relevant time limits that apply to data breach claims before you decide to pursue compensation for your suffering. Generally, you have 6 years to make a claim. For data breach claims involving a breach of your human rights, this time limit is reduced to just 1 year. 

If you’re unsure whether you’d be entitled to claim, please speak to one of our specialist advisors today or you may risk missing out on the compensation that you deserve.

What Is A Breach Of Your Personal Data?

As this article aims to help you understand your rights if you find that your personal data has been breached, we’ll start by ensuring that you’re familiar with some key definitions.

Any of your personal information that could be used to identify you, whether that be directly or indirectly, is referred to as data. This could be details such as your name, telephone number and home address, as well as your bank details, national insurance number and various credentials.

A data breach is a term used to describe an incident in which the security of your personal information is compromised, whether that be deliberately or unintentionally. Whether your data is accessed, disclosed, leaked or destroyed, an incident is considered a data breach if it’s unauthorised, meaning you haven’t consented to it.

Whatever your circumstances, if your personal data has been breached and you believe that someone else’s was responsible, you could be entitled to make a claim against them for any damage that they’ve caused you. 

To learn more about how you could achieve this, please continue reading our guide or get in touch with one of our specialist advisors at Legal Expert today.

What Personal Data Could Organisations Hold On Me?

Any time that you allow cookies on a website by ticking the pop-up box on your screen, you’re consenting to organisations using your data. These personal details could include:

  • Your name
  • Your date of birth
  • Your email address
  • Your telephone number
  • Your card details
  • Your username and password
  • Your online activity

Though the type of data may differ, the same process of request, consent, collection and use applies to different circumstances of data interaction. For example, your employer may hold your CV, bank details, salary information and timesheet, amongst other personal details, spanning from when you were a candidate for the job to even after you leave the company.

What Steps Must A Company Take To Uphold Your Rights?

As of 2018, the UK incorporated the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) into its legislation as a framework for its data protection standards. Under the Data Protection Act 2018 (DPA), certain rules must be adhered to in order to maintain fairness and minimise data breaches, including:

  • Data must only be collected for clear purposes that you’ve consented to
  • Data must be processed fairly
  • Data must be kept up to date
  • Data must be securely protected
  • Data mustn’t be retained longer than necessary
  • Data mustn’t be transferred to a country without its own data protection legislation

Organisations owe you a duty of care to protect your data, meaning they must have suitable measures in place to prevent unauthorised interaction with it. If they’ve failed to uphold their duty of care and your personal data has been breached as a result, they’re legally required to inform you within 72 hours.

What Steps Could You Take If Your Data Is Lost In A Data Breach?

If you discover that your personal data has been breached through no fault of your own, here are 3 steps that you can take to help secure your information.

  • Change your passwords
    • If you use the same login information across different accounts and one of them suffers a data breach, then there’s a risk that the other accounts could be compromised. Try to ensure that your passwords are unique and difficult to guess, containing a mixture of cases, numbers, letters and special characters.
  • Monitor your bank accounts and credit reports for suspicious activity
    • If you believe that your data breach has compromised your financial information, then you could be at risk of falling victim to theft or identity fraud.
  • Look out for scams
    • In a typical phishing scam, a fraudster poses as a legitimate organisation that contacts you in attempts to lure money from you. This can be done by calling, emailing or texting you asking for personally identifiable information, particularly of a financial nature.

If you’ve suffered a data breach, get in touch with our team at Legal Expert today to see whether you could be able to claim.

Do You Have The Right To Complain to The Party Who Lost Your Data?

If your personal data has been breached, you may wish to directly contact the organisation responsible for it. To address your concerns, you could outline the distress that they’ve caused you and emphasise how you expect them to compensate you.

If they don’t intend to compensate you, any response could still be of use to you. If they admit failure to uphold their duty of care or negligence to data protection laws, then this may prove useful evidence in any case against them.

Do You Have The Right To Complain To The ICO?

If your personal data has been breached or you have concerns about an organisation’s data protection practices, you could make a report to the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), which provides guidance to organisations on how they interact with your data.

If your report is made within 3 months of the incident, the ICO could investigate whether the organisation in question has breached data protection laws and penalise non-compliance with them through fines.

However, regardless of whether they determine that the organisation’s failings were responsible for your breach, the ICO does not provide compensation. At best, the ICO’s findings could support your claim against the organisation in question.

Do You Have The Right To Take Your Case To The Courts?

If your personal data has been breached and you bring the issue to the organisation responsible directly, you may be disappointed by their response. Whether they fail to admit liability or are unable to provide you with compensation, you may wish to bring your issue to a small claims court to be resolved.

As mentioned above, findings from the ICO could be key to making a successful claim if they deem the organisation in question to have acted in breach of data protection laws. Therefore, raising your concern with the ICO first could be a helpful indicator of whether you have a valid claim.

Do You Have The Right To Seek Arbitration?

Despite some data breach claims ending up in court, this is rare. In our experience, most claims can be resolved outside of court when handled by our solicitors at Legal Expert. With years of experience making successful claims for a variety of cases, why not get in touch with our team today to see how we could help you?

Our specialist advisors can offer you a free assessment of your circumstances to establish whether you could have a claim and how much compensation you could be entitled to for your suffering. Our advisors are available 24/7, so whether you’d like to start your claim or simply get some legal advice on your data breach, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.

How A Data Breach Claim Could Compensate You

If your personal data has been breached through no fault of your own, did you know that you could be entitled to compensation for any damage caused? From financial losses that you’ve experienced as a result of your data breach or any mental harm that you’ve suffered, this could be compensated as part of your claim.

Typically, compensation for a data breach claim is calculated by considering two types of damage that the claimant may have suffered as a result: material and non-material damage.

  • Material damage can be claimed to recover any financial losses that you may have incurred because of the data breach. If your bank details were accessed by hackers, this could have resulted in a theft. Alternatively, your personal information may have been used as part of an identity theft crime, causing persisting damage to your credit rating and lasting financial issues.
  • Non-material damage can be claimed to account for any mental harm that you may have experienced as a result of your data breach. If your privacy was violated, you could be suffering from emotional anguish as a result. This could have a wider effect on other areas of your life, impacting relationships, work, and even your ability to cope day-to-day.

For more information on compensation for data breach victims, please continue reading to learn how non-material damage payouts are calculated. Alternatively, please get in touch with our team today to receive an estimated settlement figure for your case.

Calculating Compensation For Personal Data Which Has Been Lost After A Breach

If your personal data has been breached through no fault of your own, you could be entitled to compensation for any damage caused. From financial losses that you’ve experienced as a result of your data breach or any mental harm that you’ve suffered, this could be compensated as part of your claim.

In the past, data breach victims were only entitled to compensation if they could demonstrate that they’d suffered financial losses as a result. However, in 2015, the case of Vidal-Hall and others v Google Inc changed this technicality to allow mental harm alone to be compensated as part of data breach claims. Therefore, you could now be able to claim compensation for any non-material damage that you’ve experienced as a result of your data breach, regardless of whether it caused you any material damage.

As part of this ruling, it was advised that compensation for data breach victims should be calculated in line with that of personal injury claims. As a result, the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG) can be used as guidance, providing estimated settlement figures according to the extent of suffering experienced by the claimant. For some examples, please refer to the table below:

SufferingSeverityCompensationDetails

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
Severe

£56,180 to £94,470

Your trauma will affect most aspects of your life, impacting your ability to function as you did before, which will be severely disabling in nature.

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

Less severe

£3,710 to £7,680

You will be predicted to make a full recovery within 1-2 years, after which only minor symptoms of your trauma should persist, if any.

Psychiatric Damage

Less severe

£1,440 to £5,500

You will have found day-to-day activities challenging and experience trouble sleeping as a result of your trauma, but your prognosis will be good.

As mentioned above, compensation for non-material damage is valued based on the extent of the claimant’s suffering. If you’re wondering how much compensation you could be awarded for your data breach claim, we would advise against the use of online compensation calculators. The estimated settlement figures that they provide can be generalisations, instead of considering the various factors that make your case unique.

For a more accurate estimate of how much compensation you could be entitled to, please speak to one of our specialist advisors at Legal Expert today for a free consultation on your circumstances.

No Win No Fee Claims If Personal Data Has Been Lost After A Breach

It’s common to experience financial losses after falling victim to a data breach that wasn’t your fault. If you find yourself in this position, you may also feel like pursuing a claim is financially unattainable, given the high cost of legal fees.

However, a No Win No Fee agreement could be the solution you need in order to be able to pursue the compensation that you deserve. If you haven’t heard of this type of agreement before, here are some common benefits that make them such a popular choice for claimants:

  • If your solicitor doesn’t win your claim, you don’t have to pay them anything
  • There aren’t any upfront costs or hidden fees, meaning there are no surprises

There’s no catch with a No Win No Fee agreement, as everything is outlined in your agreement before you sign it. In the case that your solicitor does win your claim for you, they’ll take what’s known as a ‘success fee’ to cover any legal costs they’ve incurred. However, it’s only a small percentage and is capped by law so you don’t need to worry about losing much of your payout.

Start Your Claim

If your personal data has been breached, why not save yourself the hassle of navigating the legal system yourself and reach out to our team at Legal Expert today?

To begin, one of our specialist advisors will offer you a free assessment of your circumstances to establish whether you could have a claim and how much compensation you could be entitled to for your suffering. In addition, they can connect you with one of our expert solicitors to handle your case on a No Win No Fee basis.

Our advisors are available 24/7, so whether you’d like to start your claim or simply get some legal advice on your data breach, please don’t hesitate to get in touch:

Essential Data Breach Claim Resources

We hope you’ve enjoyed our guide to data breach claims. For more free advice and legal help, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with our team at Legal Expert today. If your personal data has been breached, then the following additional resources that we’ve provided may be of help.

For a more detailed breakdown of the UK’s data protection laws, please see the links below for access to the full legislations:

 

Guide by Mavers

Edited by Billing

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