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My Sort Code And Account Number Have Been Disclosed In A Data Breach – Can I Claim?

Have you had your account number leaked and the disclosure of your sort code in a data breach? Are you looking to make a claim? This article has been made to inform you about the different types of financial data breaches along with how you could begin the claims process. 

sort code data breach

A guide to making a sort code data breach claim

A data breach is an incident in which personal data is lost, accessed, changed, destroyed,  or disclosed without a lawful reason. As a result of a data breach, you could be greatly affected psychologically or financially. 

If you were affected this way and the data breach was caused by an organisation’s wrongful conduct when processing or storing the personal data, you could claim.

It is important to act quickly when making a data breach claim. This is due to the fact that there is a limited window of time after a data breach has occurred in which you can make a claim. 

Get in touch with us today to see if you can start your data breach claim by:

Select A Section

  1. What Is A Bank Account Number Or Sort Code Data Breach?
  2. Types Of Financial Data Breach Claims
  3. Examples Of Sort Code Data Breaches
  4. How To Claim For A Financial And Banking Information Data Breach
  5. Bank Account And Sort Code Data Breach Claims Calculator
  6. Find Out More About No Win No Fee Claims

What Is A Bank Account Number Or Sort Code Data Breach?

As mentioned above, a data breach can be defined broadly as a security incident that has affected the integrity, confidentiality or availability of personal data. This can include banking details, such as account numbers and sort codes.

This, for example, could occur at universities, banks and charities: any place where you have consented for your personal data to be used.

Data breaches are often the result of a third party, such as hackers, that have gained access to personal information. However, sometimes companies may send your personal data to someone else without your consent, or alter your data without any permission from you. 

The UK General Data Protection Regulation (UK GDPR) and the Data Protection Act 2018 are the main pieces of legislation that give strict guidelines on how your personal data can be used by organisations, businesses and other institutions. 

Types Of Financial Data Breach Claims

Data breaches can occur within any organisation, financial institution and charity. There are several different types of financial data breaches and they include:

  • Data has been lost, hacked or leaked
  • Identity theft, e.g. for the purposes of falsely obtaining credit cards
  • A staff member wasn’t trained in data protection and your personal data was compromised as a result of them leaving it in an unsecured location.

These failings can be due to a third party, such as ransomware and hackers, or human error. If a data breach occurs and it risks your freedoms and rights, the organisation should inform you without undue delay. 

Data Breach Statistics

The Cyber Security Breaches Survey 2021 recorded that there were a total of 1,419 UK businesses, along with 487 UK registered charities and 378 educational institutions, surveyed by telephone. Out of the 1, 419 businesses, there were four in ten that reported having a cyber security breach or attack. A quarter of the charities also reported having suffered a cyber security attack.

The Information Commissioner’s Office goes into further detail about the data breaches that affected different industries for the period of October 2021 to December 2021. Finance, insurance and credit had recorded that there were 185 incidents that involved cyber and non-cyber incidents. This is lower than the previous quarter, a period between July 2021 to September 2021, where the incidents were recorded as 259. 

The most recorded cyber-related incidents were ransomware viruses and attacks at 19 for this period. 

Examples Of Sort Code Data Breaches

The loss of any personal data can have a large impact on a person, potentially causing psychological distress and financial loss.  

Below are some examples of how data breaches could happen: 

  • Negligent cyber security: Companies could have lax cyber security measures, or fail to regularly update, then it could lead to data being stolen and then misused. 
  • A cyber attack: Hackers could obtain and sell personal information, impacting a large number of people by accessing the company’s system; for example, by using phishing emails to gain access. 
  • Ransomware viruses: These types of viruses hold the personal information hostage. Cyberattackers make ransom demands for the safe return of the information. However, there is an uncertainty if the people behind the virus will return it or if they have already sold the data. 
  • Human error: An employee might keep your personal data in a file, but leave the file open in an area where those who aren’t authorised to access it do so anyway.

How To Claim For A Financial And Banking Information Data Breach

If you begin your claim for a financial and banking information data breach, there are a number of steps that you need to take to make your claim as successful as possible. The process can be daunting but below is a how-to you can follow to begin. 

Under the UK GDPR, a company is required to inform you and the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) if there has been a data breach that risks your rights and freedoms. If you notice that you have any unauthorised or unusual charges on your bank account, inform your bank immediately.

However, if they don’t get in touch with you about the sort code data breach, you should raise your concerns with them. If they don’t give you a satisfactory response, you could raise your concerns with the ICO within 3 months of the organisation’s last meaningful contact on the matter.

The ICO can’t award you compensation or give advice on what type of compensation could be owed to you, but it may launch an independent investigation into the breach. While it isn’t mandatory, it could be useful to obtain legal advice. This could help you clear any confusion or anxiety you may have when making a claim. 

Gathering Evidence

An important step to begin the claims process is to start gathering evidence of the sort code data breach. It could be the information that you may have received from the data controller confirming that a data breach has taken place. This letter or email should have the date the breach occurred and what was exposed.

The findings of the ICO’s investigation could also be used as evidence, along with any financial records that show financial loss, such as credit scores or bank statements. 

For more information, don’t hesitate to get in touch with an advisor. Just call the number at the top of the page.

Bank Account And Sort Code Data Breach Claims Calculator

There are two kinds of compensation you could receive as part of your data breach claim: material damages and non-material damages.

Material damages include the financial loss you have experienced due to a data breach. For example, if your sort code and account number were stolen in a data breach, then you may incur unusual charges to your account. Or, unauthorised use of your credit card could have an adverse affect on your credit score.

The Judicial College provides guideline compensation brackets for common physical and psychological injuries. You can find examples of these in the compensation table below. 

Types of Mental Anguish How Much? Description
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder: Moderate£7,680 to £21,730The injured person will have recovered but there may be some continuing effects that aren’t disabling.
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder: Severe£56,180 to £94,470Cases include permanent effects which prevent a person from working or functioning at anything in the pre-trauma level. All aspects of life are badly affected.
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder: Less Severe£3,710 to £7,680Making a full recovery within two years, and only having minor symptoms persisting over a longer period.
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder: Moderately Severe£21,730 to £56,180Significant disability, but the prognosis may be good with the aid of professional help

After the Court of Appeal heard Vidal-Hall and others v Google Inc (2015), it was determined that you can make a claim for only non-material damages after a personal data breach. It showed that you don’t need to have suffered financial losses to claim for non-material damages. 

Non-material damages are relating to the psychological damages that have been caused by a data breach. This could include problems such as anxiety, depression and PTSD.  The amount of compensation can vary depending on the severity of your case. This includes the effect it has had on you and your personal life.

A medical assessment would need to be performed  in order to assess your suffering and your recovery. This could be used as evidence for claiming non-material damages. This assessment would be done by an independent medical professional. 

We have a compensation calculator that can be used to see how your injury could be valued.  Alternatively, for a free evaluation of what your claim could be worth, get in touch with our advisors today.

Find Out More About No Win No Fee Claims

A No Win No Fee agreement is an arrangement between you and your solicitor. They are based around if you are successful in your claims case. If you aren’t successful then you wouldn’t have to pay a success fee to your solicitor. However, if your claim is successful then a success fee, which is capped by law, is deducted from your compensation. Your solicitor will discuss this with you, so any surprises will be avoided. 

For more information on the process of claiming under a No Win No Fee agreement, contact our advisors. They are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and ready to answer any questions you may have. 

For more information about a sort code data breach and No Win No Fee claims, please get in touch: 

Our Related Guides

We have included some helpful links that may be of interest to you. 

See more about the action the ICO has taken as well as further details about when an organisation should inform you that they’re using your personal data.

We also have a guide on what you can do if your data has been breached. 

We have an article on bank data breach compensation claims.

You can also find out what happens when you make a claim for your accident or injury.

For further information on a sort code data breach, please contact us through the live chat feature in the corner.

Written by Welsh

Edited by Victorine

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