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Newcastle City Council Data Breach Compensation Claims Guide – How Much Compensation Can I Claim? – Amounts For Newcastle City Council Data Breach

In this article, we look at what you could do if you were affected by a potential Newcastle City Council data breach.

Have you suffered mentally or financially because of a data breach? A data breach can be the unlawful or unauthorised sharing, loss, destruction, access to or alteration of your personal data and it can happen with alarming ease.

We can provide personal information when we send an email, shop online or are employed by an organisation. We trust that organisations will abide by data protection laws to keep our data safe. They might not always succeed.

Data breaches can be a serious issue. If an organisation’s security failings cause a data breach, they could be investigated and even liable for claims.

Newcastle City Council data breach

A data protection breach can cause a great deal of misery for the individual it affects. In addition to the psychological harm it might cause, you could find yourself being the victim of a crime such as identity theft. The short and long-term consequences can result in damage to both your finances and your mental health.

Speak to us at Legal Expert to explore your options:

  • You can call and speak to our team on 0800 073 8804
  • Perhaps you would prefer to contact us at Legal Expert
  • Or, you can use the ‘live support’ option at the bottom right of this screen

Select A Section

  1. A Guide On Claiming For Newcastle City Council Data Breaches
  2. Cyber Security Breach Statistics
  3. What Are Claims For Newcastle City Council Data Breaches?
  4. Key Points For Local Authorities Following The GDPR
  5. How Could Public Bodies Experience Data Breaches?
  6. Breaches Of Tenants’ Statements And Rental Details
  7. How Does The ICO Complaints Process Work?
  8. Suing A Public Body Who Breached Your Data Privacy
  9. Newcastle City Council Data Breach: Harmful Effects
  10. Calculate Newcastle City Council Data Breach Payouts
  11. No Win No Fee Claims For Newcastle City Council Data Breaches
  12. Choosing An Expert To Deal With Your Case
  13. Speak To An Expert About Newcastle City Council data breach
  14. Find Out More
  15. FAQs On Data Protection Claims

A Guide On Claiming For Newcastle City Council Data Breaches

In this guide, we aim to provide you with the resources to make an informed choice about starting a data breach claim. Local authorities are required to protect your personal information if they hold or process it. The Data Protection Act 2018 enacts the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) into UK law. Both aim to toughen security measures for personal information that organisations use.

In the UK, these laws apply to every entity, such as an agency, business or organisation, that processes personal data. They’re enforced by the Information Commissioners Office (ICO) who can investigate and issue penalties if companies fail to comply with GDPR. The ICO can issue severe fines to organisations for breaching data protection laws.

Victims can suffer lost money and severe mental anguish due to data breaches. With this in mind, we explain how you can use medical evidence and financial proof to show how badly the data breach impacted you.

During a compensation claim, it can be possible to calculate payouts and construct a case if an organisation’s data security failings caused you to suffer financially or mentally.

If you need any help throughout this article, get in touch today.

Cyber Security Breach Statistics

The statistics below demonstrate the extent of the problem. The charts below show how frequently senior managers, such as directors, are given updates on actions that are taken in regards to cyber security.

The figures cover the 12 months leading up to March 2020. 71% of charities and 66% of businesses said that, at least once a year, senior managers are updated on the state of cyber security.

Source:https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/cyber-security-breaches-survey-2020/cyber-security-breaches-survey-2020

What Are Claims For Newcastle City Council Data Breaches?

Data breach claims can be made if a council failed to ensure personal information was held or processed securely, causing you economic or psychological damage.

Firstly, before you start your claim, it can be useful to examine what defines a data breach in the first place. A personal data breach is the unlawful or unauthorised sharing, access, loss, destruction, or alteration of any information that can identify you.

Consent is a key factor in the use of data and it can be important to check before you start a claim that at some point you did not give permission for that data to be used as it was. Consent must be asked for in a clear way.

As long as you are able to prove positive wrongful conduct regarding data protection on the part of the council, and you suffered mentally or financially as a consequence, you could claim.

Speak with us now if you need any help. Our advisors give free legal advice. What’s more, you’ll be under no obligation to proceed with a claim.

Key Points For Local Authorities Following The GDPR

The ICO has identified 7 core principles for personal data processing. These principles seek to assist organisations rather than catch them out or punish them. Briefly, they are below.

  1. Personal data should be collected in a lawful way, that is fair and transparent.
  2. Only the data required for the purposes of processing should be collected.
  3. A minimal amount of data should be collected.
  4. Personal data should be processed with accuracy and kept up to date.
  5. It should be disposed of when no longer needed and only kept for as long as is necessary.
  6. It should be kept secure (integrity and confidentiality).
  7. Organisations that process personal data should have accountability.

Whilst external hacks and threats from cybercriminals are a risk, data breach incidents can also be the result of human error. Therefore, data security should be a fundamental part of how a business processes personal data in today’s modern world.

How Could Public Bodies Experience Data Breaches?

It’s necessary for local authorities to use some personal information in order to be of service to their community.

Before we discuss the specific ways that a data breach could occur, firstly it’s important to acknowledge how much information local authorities may need to keep about us. The personal information they could hold includes:

  • Names
  • Addresses
  • Email addresses
  • Passwords
  • National Insurance and numbers
  • Benefits and pension details
  • Rent statements and arrears information
  • Council Tax data
  • Marital status and details about any dependents
  • Social care information that could identify you

Any of these details could help to identify you.

Public bodies can experience data breaches through error or deliberate action. For example:

  • A staff member might lose an unsecured laptop containing personal information.
  • Records containing personal data might be stored in unsecured filing cabinets, where an unauthorised person is able to access them.
  • A failure to properly invest in or review secure IT defences allows cybercriminals to steal personal data. 

This guide on the possible consequences of a potential Newcastle City Council data breach aims to help you. But if you can’t find the answers here, why not call us?

Breaches Of Tenants’ Statements And Rental Details

Many local authorities allow social housing tenants to pay their rent on a standing order or direct debit arrangement. This allows a swift and seamless collection of rent.

However, in order to achieve this, the local authority should have basic bank details. Given that they may be already in possession of your name and address, data like this should be properly guarded.

It’s important to note that there can be three main parties involved in data use. The data controllers are the organisation that decides the purposes for using the data and the means by which it will be processed. They may then out-source the actual processing to a data processor. The data processor can be an organisation such as an agency. The data subject is the person whose personal information is collected and processed.

At every stage, the data controller and processor are required to abide by data protection law.

How Does The ICO Complaints Process Work?

Even when you complain directly to them, it’s important to note that the ICO is an independent body that cannot pay you compensation for data breaches. You do not have to involve them in your case unless you choose to.

By law, any company that suffers a major security breach to personal data has a responsibility to inform the ICO within 72 hours. Such a security breach would risk the freedoms and rights of data subjects. If it doesn’t risk these, the council doesn’t have to report the breach to the ICO. But it should look into it regardless.

It may be that a council is unaware of any breach itself. The first you may know of a problem is when money starts to go missing from your account or other activities online are compromised. Once the council is aware of a breach affecting the rights and freedoms of data subjects, they should inform the data subjects without undue delay.

Newcastle City Council Data Breach Complaints?

If you complain to the local authority about the data breach but don’t receive a satisfactory response, you could contact the ICO. You should do this before three months passes after the authority’s final meaningful response. The ICO might investigate, but their decisions can be affected by late complaints.

Furthermore, the ICO does not automatically take up an investigation for every data breach. They also can’t offer you compensation. However, if you have evidence of a justifiable claim, our solicitors could help you there.

Suing A Public Body Who Breached Your Data Privacy

Before making a claim, you should raise your concerns with the local authority. In some cases, the council involved may acknowledge the situation and could offer compensation directly to you.

You can accept or refuse this offer. It’s important to note that if you accept an offer of compensation, you cannot continue with a personal data breach claim against them and the matter will be considered settled.

If you have suffered financially or mentally because of a personal data breach caused by a council’s data protection failings, you could claim. Though claiming can seem daunting, you do not have to do this alone. A data breach lawyer could help you assemble all the relevant proof, request evidence from the parties concerned and guide your claim to a successful outcome.

Newcastle City Council Data Breach: Harmful Effects

What harmful effects could you be compensated for? When your personal data is exposed or hacked through deliberate acts or human error, you could suffer both financial and emotional damage. A data protection breach claim can consider two types of awards called material and non-material damages.

Material damages

This refers to the actual financial loss you’ve suffered due to the data breach. As mentioned, a lapse in personal data security may mean that a cybercriminal was able to access your bank account or credit card details.

To prove material damages, you could use bank statements or credit scores, for example.

Non-material:

As the victim of a data breach, it’s possible to suffer anxiety or stress because of the anguish and uncertainty of how your personal information will be used. For some people, psychological injury is the hardest part of a data breach.

During the case of Vidal-Hall and others v Google Inc [2015], the Court of Appeal held that you could seek compensation if a data breach had caused you psychological harm but no financial loss. Before this case, that wasn’t possible. Therefore, you could claim for financial loss or mental harm (or both) if you can prove you suffered them.

The case also resulted in psychological harm being valued for data breach claims as it would be for personal injury claims.

Calculate Newcastle City Council Data Breach Payouts

To evidence that your injuries were caused or worsened by the data breach and to determine the severity of your condition, you would attend a medical assessment as part of the claims process.

The independent professional would create a report. That report would be used to value your injuries, alongside the Judicial College Guidelines. (This publication allows the courts to arrive at a ‘guide award’ for things like emotional suffering and psychological harm.)

The compensation table below includes recommendations, taken from these guidelines, for mental harm.

InjurySeverityRecommended award
Psychiatric DamageSevere£51,460 to £108,620
PTSDSevere£56,180 to £94,470
Psychiatric DamageModerately severe£17,900 to £51,460
PTSDModerately severe£21,730 to £56,180
Psychiatric DamageModerate£5,500 to £17,900
PTSDModerate£7,680 to £21,730
Psychiatric DamageLess severeUp to £5,500
PTSDLess severeUp to £7,680

Again, it’s important to stress that these figures are not absolute certainties. For an accurate estimate, the scrutiny of a skilled data breach specialist lawyer could help.

You can only make one claim for a data breach. So a good lawyer could help you catch and record all the short and long-term repercussions of being a victim of a data breach.

To get your free estimate, why not reach out to our advisors today?

No Win No Fee Claims For Newcastle City Council Data Breaches

If you’re able to claim, you could do so under a No Win No Fee agreement. When you work with a lawyer in a capacity such as this there are multiple direct benefits, such as:

  • No solicitor fees to pay upfront.
  • Nothing to pay in solicitor fees as the case moves forward.
  • You would only pay the solicitor’s fee if the claim is successful.

There is a small percentage of the final settlement amount to be paid if your case wins. This is called a ‘success fee’ and simply aims to reward the lawyers for their efforts on your behalf. It’s also capped by law to benefit you.

No Win No Fee could be an option for you if you’re concerned about paying a solicitor’s fees. Our solicitors offer their services on a No Win No Fee basis. To see if our advisors could connect you, get in touch.

Choosing An Expert To Deal With Your Case

It isn’t necessary to use the services of a solicitor to claim. You could do it alone. However, we believe there are particular advantages to getting help this way:

  • You can receive legal advice throughout your claim.
  • They’ll interpret the legal jargon and help you build a case.
  • They can accurately estimate your compensation claim value.
  • You wouldn’t have to negotiate with the defendant—they would do this for you.

Furthermore, our data breach lawyers are able to help you from anywhere in the country because they can conduct your case remotely. This enables you to have the freedom to work with solicitors who have expertise in cases like this.

Speak To An Expert About Newcastle City Council data breach

If you have evidence of a justifiable claim, we could help. Simply get in touch by:

  • Calling and speaking to our team on 0800 073 8804
  • Perhaps you would prefer to contact us at Legal Expert
  • Or, you can use the ‘live support’ option at the bottom right of this screen

Find Out More

To conclude, more information and resources are available on the links below:

  1. Advice on medical data breach cases
  2. Data breaches at a nursery
  3. And what to do if you suffered a data breach due to a stalker
  4. Lastly, help with how to report a data breach problem

FAQs On Data Protection Claims

What amounts to a breach of GDPR?

An infringement of the correct uses or pre-agreed terms of personal data use could involve a breach. This can be both accidental or deliberate, from internal issues or an external cyber attack.

What to do if you are a victim of a Newcastle City Council data breach

You could report the issue to the appropriate organisation and take steps to alter passwords or online security if necessary. If you suffered mental harm or financial loss, you could consider whether you’re eligible to claim compensation.

How long will a data breach case take?

There are no set time frames for the length of a data breach case, but simple ones could only take weeks.

Will the local authority dispute my claim of a data breach?

This may not happen. However, if it does despite your evidence, you could get in touch with our advisors to see what next steps you could take.

Finally, could it happen again?

A personal data breach can occur if the companies and organisations involved fail to rectify their data security issues. Organisations like the ICO exist to help them adhere to data protection law.

Thank you for reading our guide exploring what could happen after a Newcastle City Council data breach.

Written by Waters

Edited by Victorine

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