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

I Have Been Affected By A Breach In Data Protection At Newman University, Can I Claim?

If a data protection breach has caused you psychological or financial harm, you might want to know if you could do anything about it. After all, the university should protect your personal data. If they fail to do so, could you make a data breach claim against Newman University for compensation? We’ve put this guide together to explain whether or not you could be eligible to make such a claim.

Data Breach Claim Against Newman University

Newman University data breach claims guide

In the sections below, we answer lots of common questions about making a claim for university data breach compensation. We’ll explain what laws are in place to protect your data and what common cybersecurity threats a university could face. We also offer some examples of data breach incidents that have already affected universities.

Finally, we explain how the team here at Legal Expert could help you launch your own data breach claim and help you seek the compensation you deserve. If you have any questions about the information contained in this guide, or would like to begin a claim right away, you can reach our expert advisors on 0800 073 8804.

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A Guide To Data Breach Claims Against Newman University

If you’ve been harmed either financially or emotionally because of a data breach, you may be wondering what action you could take. Universities, under law, are meant to keep your personal data secure. The Data Protection Act 2018 is in line with arguably the strictest data security law in the world: the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). If the law is breached and your data is hacked, stolen, disclosed or transmitted unlawfully, you could seek compensation for non-material and material harm (terms we’ll explain below) caused to you by such a breach.

This guide explains in detail what could constitute a breach of data. In the sections that follow, we define what a data breach means and what rules apply to universities that hold or process your personal data. We explain how compensation for such cases could be calculated, and why it may be a wise option to get legal assistance when seeking compensation for a data breach.

What Is A Data Protection Breach At Newman University?

In order to understand what a data breach by Newman University could look like, we must be aware of the definition of personal data. According to the enforcer of data protection law in the UK, the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), personal data is:

  • Information used on its own, from which a person could be identified.
  • Information used in conjunction with other information which could identify a person.

Personal data could include information such as:

  • Someone’s name
  • Their address
  • Their contact details
  • Student ID numbers
  • IP addresses

Sensitive Information Classification

Some personal data is more sensitive than others. Sensitive information may need a higher level of protection than less sensitive information. Examples of sensitive information could include:

  • Medical information
  • Religious beliefs
  • Sexual orientation or data concerning sex life
  • Race
  • Political opinions
  • Biometric information

What Is A Data Breach?

Data breach incidents are classed as such if a security breach leads to personal information being:

  • Lost
  • Made unavailable
  • Stolen
  • Accessed, stored, transmitted, disclosed, processed or altered unlawfully or without authorisation

How Could A Newman University Data Breach Occur?

It is important to recognise that not all data breaches are caused by malicious behaviour. You could launch a university data breach claim if someone has accidentally or negligently breached your data protection too. Examples of the different causes of a data breach include:

  • A cyber attack, such as the Blackbaud hack, which we explain in detail in a later section of this guide.
  • A hacking.
  • Insufficient protection of computer security or network security.
  • The loss or theft of a device containing personal data.
  • A mistake by a member of staff, such as sending an email or letter containing personal data to the wrong address.
  • Malware.
  • Phishing attack.

How You Could Be Affected By a Newman University data breach

There are a number of different ways in which an alumni, staff or student data breach could affect you. Consequences could include:

  • Privacy violation – particularly in cases where there is a privacy breach of sensitive information. Victims may be worried about who has accessed their exposed data and how it could affect them.
  • Psychological harm – stress, worry, anxiety and depression could be caused by a data protection breach.
  • Identity theft – if someone has enough information on a data subject, they could use that information to impersonate the victim, and they could apply for finance in the victim’s name.
  • Theft – if enough data is hacked, stolen or exposed and a cybercriminal gets hold of it, they could potentially gain access to a victim’s financial accounts, and they could steal money from them.

To find out if you have a valid data breach claim against Newman University, get in touch.

Report A GDPR breach

If you believe you’ve been the victim of a Newman University data protection breach, it would be wise to take a look at the data protection policy of your university to familiarise yourself with the data breach reporting procedure you should follow.

You may wish to get in touch with the person in charge of information security at the university to let them know there has been a breach. The controller could then launch a data protection impact assessment to see how you could have been harmed by the breach. We would also recommend you get in contact with our team so that we can assess your case to see if you could make a data breach claim.

How Universities Should Implement The GDPR

The EU put into place the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) back in 2018. This is currently the strongest data security/protection law in the world. The UK’s application of this law can be found in the Data Protection Act 2018 (DPA), which was updated in 2018 to reflect the more stringent rules surrounding data protection.

It is a requirement, by law, that any data processor or data controller (including a university) approaches data protection with the principles that underpin GDPR. They should therefore ensure that the:

  • Processing of personal data is lawful and fair.
  • The collection of personal data is specified, legitimate and explicit.
  • Personal data they have is not excessive and is adequate and relevant.
  • The storage of personal data is accurate and is regularly updated to ensure accuracy.
  • Storage of personal data happens for only as long as needed for its specified purpose.
  • Personal data collected is processed securely.

What Is A GDPR Breach?

If an organisation fails to adhere to the principles above, it may lead to a security breach, which could lead to a personal data or GDPR breach. GDPR allows victims of data breaches to claim compensation for the financial and psychological damage caused to them by a breach. If a breach has affected you in this way, you could make a data breach claim, and we could help you with this.

How Higher Education Institutions Could Be Affected By Breaches In Data Protection

While you may assume data breaches are a rare occurrence in education settings, here we offer some examples of how UK universities have been affected by data privacy incidents.

The Blackbaud Hack

In the early part of 2020, a cloud computing provider known as Blackbaud was the victim of a ransomware attack. A ransomware attack is where someone gains access to systems or data, encrypts it so it cannot be accessed, and asks for payment before they destroy their copy or return it. Blackbaud paid the perpetrator with the belief that they destroyed the data they’d hacked. However, the attackers had still accessed the personal data relating to staff, students and alumni. Some of the universities involved included:

  • University of York
  • University of London
  • Loughborough University
  • University College, Oxford
  • University of Exeter
  • Oxford Brookes University
  • University of Reading
  • University of Leeds

Source: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-53528329

Non-Malicious Data Breaches

As we mentioned earlier in this guide, not all data breaches are caused by malicious attacks. The University of East Anglia has seen two examples of such breaches. In 2017, the University sent the personal information of a member of staff to 300 students in error. In another incident, the sensitive information of some students was sent in error to all of those taking an American studies course. The University paid £140,000 in compensation to the affected students.

Sources: 

  • https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-norfolk-41934027
  • https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-norfolk-51284352?intlink_from_url=https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/topics/cwz4lvzgq9gt/data-protection&

Another example of a non-malicious data breach was when the University of Greenwich was forced to pay £120,000 by the ICO in fines for a personal data breach affecting almost 20,000 people. The breach was the result of a microsite created by a student that was not adequately protected online and was subject to unauthorised access.

Whether the breach that affected you was the result of a malicious attack, a simple error or negligence, you could make a data breach claim if it affected you psychologically or financially.

For more information about a data breach claim against Newman University, please call our advisors today.

Statistics On Higher Education Breaches In Data Protection

A worrying Redscan report from 2020 gives insight into the Freedom of Information responses of 86 UK universities.

The report revealed that over half of university staff have not been given security awareness training. And 12% of universities do not give any data security training to students. This could leave them at risk when it comes to helping to protect personal data.

The report also revealed that over half of the UK universities had reported a data breach to the Information Commissioner’s Office in the 12 months preceding. In addition to this, when Jisc, an ISP servicing several UK universities tested the security of university systems, testers gained access to over 50 of the universities’ systems, each within a period of 2 hours.

Source: https://www.itgovernance.co.uk/blog/54-of-universities-reported-a-data-breach-in-the-past-year

Cyber Security Threats To Universities

Newman University should take the protection of data seriously. They may have robust procedures on data protection in place to ensure they do all that they can to protect your personal data. Part of their responsibilities could include protecting your data from common cybersecurity threats including:

  • Data theft – this may not just affect personal data, but research data too. In fact, the National Cyber Security Centre was reported to have experienced targeted attacks perpetrated by Russian spies in 2020 against coronavirus research organisations. (Source: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-53429506)
  • Attacks on passwords – password guessing software could be used to guess an authorised user’s login credentials.
  • Malware – Malware or viruses could cause a Newman University data breach
  • Keystroke detecting software – these work by recording the keystrokes of targets in order to steal passwords and login credentials.
  • Phishing – a report by Redscan revealed that phishing is one of the most dangerous ways in which university systems could be attacked. Duping students or staff to input their login details into fake sites could allow cybercriminals to gain access to their accounts. (Source: https://www.redscan.com/media/The-state-of-cyber-security-across-UK-universities-Redscan-report.pdf)

Whether you’ve been affected by a data breach involving a malicious attack, human error or negligence, a data breach claim against a university could bring you compensation for not only the financial harm you’ve suffered but the emotional harm too.

What Ways Could You Be Compensated For A Breach In Data Protection?

Under GDPR, victims of data breaches can claim compensation for not only the material harm they’ve suffered but the non-material harm too. But what do these terms mean?

  • Material harm relates to the financial impact of a breach of personal data. This could be money stolen from your bank account, or credit card purchases made fraudulently in your name, for example.
  • Non-material is harm that is harder to quantify in financial terms. It could relate to the loss of privacy and emotional damage caused by a data breach.

Can I Really Claim For Psychological Harm?

A data breach claim could include psychological injury compensation. This is because there was a legal precedent set in 2015 which changed data breach claims significantly. In the past, claimants needed to have suffered financial harm to claim for psychological injuries. The case of Vidal-Hall and others v Google Inc [2015] – Court of Appeal changed that. Now, it’s possible to seek compensation for just one or the other alone.

This means that you could claim compensation for psychological harm such as loss of sleep, anxiety, depression and stress even if the data breach didn’t cause you financial loss.

Claims Calculator For Data Breaches By Newman University

What’s needed to prove a data breach claim against Newman University? Calculating the value of your case would involve assessing all the facts and circumstances surrounding it. In terms of the financial harm you’ve suffered, this may mean examining bank statements and credit card bills to assess how much you’ve lost. 

In terms of psychological injuries, this would involve getting an independent medical assessment. You would need to see a medical professional, who would take a look at any relevant previous medical notes, talk to you about your injuries and write a medical report that could be used to evidence your claim and value for your injuries. This can be arranged as part of your data breach claim.

To give you some insight into psychological injury compensation, we have put together a table containing figures from the Judicial College Guidelines. This is a publication that lawyers and the courts could use to value a claim.

InjuryHow SevereCompensation Bracket (JCG)
General psychiatric injurySevere£51,460 to £108,620
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)Severe£56,180 to £94,470
General psychiatric injuryModerately severe£17,900 to £51,460
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)Moderately severe£21,730 to £56,180
General psychiatric injuryModerate£5,500 to £17,900
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)Moderate£7,680 to £21,730
General psychiatric injuryLess severeUp to £5,500
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)Less severeUp to £7,680

For a more accurate estimate, please get in touch with our data breach claims advisers.

Could A Data Protection Breach Solicitor Handle My Case?

While it could be possible for you to go ahead and make a data breach claim without legal support, many claimants prefer to use a lawyer to make such claims on their behalf. There are certain benefits to having a data breach solicitor work on your case for you, including:

  • Your lawyer should fully understand the time limitations for claiming. (Data breaches are limited to 6 years and human rights breaches are limited to 1 year.)
  • Your lawyer could have the potential to build the strongest case possible.
  • They may be able to negotiate for the maximum settlement possible.
  • They could ensure you do not miss out on any of the compensation you could be entitled to claim.
  • You won’t have to take on the hard work of proving your claim yourself.

Choosing Your Lawyer

We recognise that there are many law firms out there promising to assist with data breach claims against universities, but here at Legal Expert, we believe we could be a great choice for you. By choosing to work with us on a data breach claim, you could benefit from:

  • Top-quality customer service via our freephone helpline.
  • Years of experience in helping claimants access the compensation they deserve.
  • Expert legal advice.
  • Free eligibility checks.
  • No Win No Fee data breach lawyers.

Our reviews speak for themselves, and we believe we could offer you the service our previous clients have enjoyed. Why not call our team today to start your claim?

Could I Make A No Win No Fee Data Breach Claim Against Newman University?

If you’re thinking of using the services of a lawyer to help you make a data breach claim, then you might be pleased to learn that all of our solicitors work under No Win No Fee terms. This means you wouldn’t pay a penny in legal fees until your case has concluded and your compensation has been paid out.

In general terms, No Win No Fee claims usually work as follows:

  • Your solicitor would send you a Conditional Fee Agreement (the formal term for a No Win No Fee agreement) for you to read, sign and return. Within this agreement is the terms of a success fee, which you’d effectively promise to pay your solicitor if they achieved a compensation payout for you. The success fee is usually calculated as a small percentage of your final settlement and is capped by law.
  • Once your solicitor has received the signed agreement back, they would start to build a case against the defendant on your behalf.
  • Once a settlement has been arranged, the small success fee would be taken from your final payout. The bulk of the compensation would be for your benefit.

What Happens If I Don’t Get Any Compensation?

One of the benefits of making a No Win No Fee claim is that you wouldn’t have to pay your solicitor’s fee if compensation wasn’t arranged for you. If you’d like to read about No Win No Fee claims in more detail, we have produced some guidance. Alternatively, why not pick up the phone and give us a call? We’d be happy to chat with you and answer your questions.

How To Contact Us

Are you ready to start a data breach claim? Would you like our expert advice and assistance? If so, you can reach us for free legal advice, an eligibility check, or to get connected to our data breach solicitors. Simply:

Resources

Thank you for reading our guide about the justifications for making a data breach claim against Newman University. You can take the time to find out more about claims through our resources below. 

Are You Claiming For Data Breach Stress? we explain more about the distress that could be caused by a data breach and explain how you could make such claims.

Housing Data Breach Claimsif a housing association has breached your personal data, this guide explains how to go about making a claim.

Compensation Claim Time Limitsin this guide, we explain the limitation periods that apply to a variety of compensation claims.

Mental Health Helpthis link takes you to the NHS page, showing what support you could access if you’re struggling with your mental health.

ICO Actionyou can find out what previous actions the Information Commissioner’s Office has taken against organisations that have breached personal data here.

Data Protection After Brexitif you’d like to know what’s changed after Brexit when it comes to the protection of your data, this link could help.

Thank you for reading our guide to Newman University data breach claims.

Written by Jeffries

Edited by Victorine

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