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University Of Wales Data Breach Compensation Claims Guide

Data breach claims against the University of Wales could be justified if it can be shown you’ve suffered damage to your mental health or finances following exposure of your personal information in which the university was deemed responsible.

Organisations that collect your personal data must abide by the law. This is to protect your information and if they fail, you could have grounds to sue. Whether hackers accessed a system or human error exposed your data, the outcome can be devastating. You may not have been aware of the data breach until an organisation lets you know about the incident.

University Of Wales data breach claims guide

University Of Wales data breach claims guide

Our guide provides advice on what you can do if you are the victim of a data breach. We explain your rights under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and the Data Protection Act 2018.

We have included a compensation table in the guide to offer you an idea of how much a data breach claim might be worth. You will also find information on the sort of damage you could claim for.

For more information on when data breach claims against the University of Wales could be warranted, please click on the sections below. Alternatively, to speak to a Legal Expert adviser about making a claim and to receive free legal advice, please call the following telephone number 0800 073 8804.

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A Guide To Data Breach Claims Against The University Of Wales

Personal information must be kept secure when it is collected by organisations which include universities and other educational facilities. The Data Protection Act 2018 and the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) state that all organisations that collect, process, and store personal data have a duty to ensure the information is kept secure.

As such, the University of Wales is responsible for the protection of your private information. The university must ensure that their data security is such that all personal information is protected and kept secure.

Our guide provides advice on what you can do if your personal data is breached. We explain the consequences of being a victim of a data breach, and how you could be affected. We also go into your rights to seek data breach compensation.

You will find a table that offers an idea of compensation payouts for data breach claims within this guide. Additionally, we explain how compensation is calculated.

Lastly, we offer advice on how Legal Expert can be of assistance in claiming compensation, and how you could be offered No Win No Fee terms by a specialist solicitor.

How Long Do You Have To Make A Data Breach Claim?

To make a data breach claim, you must file your case within the statutory time limit. This is set at 6 years from the date you gained knowledge of the breach.

However, if your human rights are impacted, the time limit is much shorter, being just 1 year from the date you were told of the breach.

We always advise claimants to begin a claim as early as possible to prevent a case from being time-barred, meaning you might not be able to seek the compensation you could be entitled to.

To speak to one of our advisers about data breach claims against the University of Wales, reach out to us. We provide free legal advice as well as an initial consultation which is free of charge. You would be under no obligation to pursue your claim if you decide not to.

What Are Data Breaches At The University Of Wales?

Organisations, businesses, and companies collect data from the general public whether the collection is carried out online or physically. They are known as ‘data controllers’ whereas a person’s whose data is collected is known as a ‘data subject’. A data subject can be an employee, client/customer, and anyone who has a relationship with a data controller.

All personal information that is collected must be protected. It must be kept secure so that unauthorised access does not occur. A university must have security measures in place to protect your personal information.

If there is a breach in the security at Wales University and your data is compromised in a leak, exposure, theft, loss, or if it was altered, you could sue for compensation if you suffered mental or financial damage and can prove the breach was the university’s fault.

To find out if you have a valid case and whether data breach claims against the University of Wales can be made, please get in touch today.

The GDPR And Educational Institutions

The Data Protection Act 2018 enacted the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) into law in the UK. This legislation requires that all organisations that collect, process, and store personal information must follow the law.

The General Data Protection Regulation states that:

  • Data controllers who gather, process, and store personal information owe you a duty to use it in ways that you’ve consented to. This is to protect your personal information
  • Organisations must have the correct protocols in place to ensure personal data is protected. Therefore, they must have robust cybersecurity systems in place, as well as policies and procedures relating to physical data

The GDPR defines a ‘data processor’ as being an ‘external business’ hired by a data controller to carry out the task of either storing or processing data on behalf of the controller. An example of this in relation to universities would be Blackbaud, which we’ll discuss below.

For a university or other educational facility to be GDPR compliant, they must abide by the following rules:

  • Permission needs to be granted by the data subject for their personal information to be collected
  • Data subjects must be told how their personal information is used when it is collected
  • Personal data must not be used for any other purpose than that consented to
  • Data processors, as well as data controllers, must abide by relevant laws in the countries where they operate

Do you have evidence that shows you were the victim of a data breach at the University of Wales? If so, get in touch with the Legal Expert team today. We provide free legal advice as well as a free initial consultation to all the people who contact us.

Universities Which Have Been Affected By Breaches In Data Protection

In May 2020, a number of universities in the UK were impacted by a ransomware attack on a company called Blackbaud, which they’d contracted to carry out data processing work on their behalf.

Blackbaud stored on the universities’ behalf the personal data of the likes of alumni. The ransomware virus encrypted some of the databases containing this information, barring access to anyone unless a ransom was paid. Blackbaud decided to pay that ransom to regain access and for the hackers to delete the copies of the data they’d stolen.

The universities affected by the data breach were:

Learn more about the Blackbaud hack here.

In an unrelated data breach incident, the University of Greenwich received a fine of £120,000 from the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) in 2018. This involved a ‘serious’ security data breach that affected around 20,000 people including staff and students.

The data breach involved a microsite set up for the purposes of a training conference some years before. However, when the event ended, the site was not closed down securely. In 2016, the site was targeted by hackers who exploited its vulnerabilities and allowed them to access the data stored on the site.

Have you got evidence that shows you’ve been the victim of a University of Wales data breach? Would you like to know if you have the right to compensation? An adviser can answer any questions you have in a free phone call, so please call us today.

How Many Universities Have Been Affected By Breaches In Data Security?

Internet security firm Redscan decided to undertake an investigation into the state of university security systems.

In its report, it was discovered that around 54% of UK universities suffered a data breach which required them to report it to the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) during 12 months investigated. The survey also found:

  • Around 25% of universities had not conducted any security penetration testing, the equivalent of a risk assessment
  • The study found that only 54% of university staff received security training during that period
  • Universities only invest £7,529 per annum on average in education employees

The survey also found that only 51% of university students were provided with training in security. That said, another 37% of universities did provide the required resources when students requested it.

Cybercriminals have more sophisticated tools at their disposal and cybersecurity needs to take this into account. The report concluded that universities should invest more time and money into cybersecurity. This would reduce the risk of ‘disastrous data breach incidents’ as well as ‘network outages’.

The survey also established that the most dangerous attack method still remains phishing with universities throughout the UK receiving thousands of these emails on an annual basis.

See more in the Redscan report –

Criminal Hacks And Stolen Personal Information

The Redscan report shone a light on the fact that universities in the UK were lacking in cybersecurity awareness.

The report also highlighted the fact that universities faced a constantly evolving threat. As such, universities and other higher education facilities needed to carry out regular penetration testing which is a ‘controlled’ form of hacking carried out by cybersecurity professionals. The end goal is to identify vulnerabilities that cybercriminals could exploit.

Redscan found the following:

  • 27% of UK universities had not conducted a penetration test in the past 12 months
  • Just 29% had carried out more than one penetration test

Universities are targets for cybercriminals because many of these institutions hold sensitive data. Carrying out regular penetration testing means that universities would have a better understanding on how to mitigate threats in their security. It also allows for better knowledge when it comes to being GDPR compliant.

What Types Of Damages Could Compensation Be Awarded For?

When you are a victim of a data breach the incident can leave you traumatised. Knowing that personal data may have been shared can leave you feeling vulnerable. Your mental health and well-being could be compromised, and you may start receiving unwanted and dangerous phishing emails. You could even be the victim of identity theft.

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) gives you the right to seek compensation for both material damages and non-material damage.

  • Material damages – reimburse your financial losses
  • Non-material damages – compensate you for mental harm

This means you can seek to be compensated for the following:

To speak to us about making a data breach claim against the University of Wales, get in contact today.

Calculate Compensation For University Of Wales Data Breaches

Solicitors, courts as well as insurance companies base data breach compensation payouts on previous cases deemed similar to your own. An example is the data breach case Vidal-Hall and others vs Google [2015].

An important case, Vidal-Hall changed the law in respect of seeking compensation following a breach of private information. Prior to this, claimants had to prove financial damage in order to claim compensation for the mental impact. The Court of Appeal in Vidal-Hall changed that position. Now it’s possible to be compensated for either form of damage.

As such, when assessing the compensation payout you could be awarded, a specialist data breach solicitor would factor in the psychological harm the data breach caused you, such as PTSD, anguish, anxiety, distress and depression.

We have included a compensation table that provides an idea of the potential compensation payouts awarded to claimants for mental damage. These amounts are based on awards set out by the Judicial College Guidelines.

Injury Type Severity General Damages Awarded based on Judicial College Guidelines (JCG) Details
Psychiatric harm/injury Severe £51,460 to £108,620 The prognosis is very poor with claimants experiencing symptoms that leaves the vulnerable. Therapy and treatment will not help leaving claimants struggling to cope with daily life and an ability to work
Psychiatric harm/injury Moderately Severe £17,900 to £51,460 A claimant suffers very much as above, but their prognosis is more optimistic
Psychiatric harm/injury Moderate £5,500 to £17,900 Claimants suffer much like those detailed above but with a much better prognosis. Marked improvements can be seen much earlier too
Psychiatric harm/injury Less Severe Up to £5,500 Mild symptoms of depression or stress that resolve in full within a few weeks or months.
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) Severe £56,180 to £94,470 A claimant is unable to work due to PTSD. They are unable to function as they did prior to the incident occurring. These symptoms will be permanent having a devastating affect on the claimants life and well-being

Please speak to an adviser today to find out how much your data breach claim against the University of Wales could be worth.

What Steps Do I Need To Take If I Want To Claim Compensation?

Data breach claims can be complex which is why many claimants choose to have legal representation. Specialist data breach lawyers have the necessary legal knowledge to handle this type of claim. Furthermore, there are many benefits to having a solicitor act on your behalf which includes:

  • A solicitor would take care of all aspects of your claim including pre-action protocols and ensuring your claim is made within the applicable time limits
  • A specialist data breach solicitor will work hard to get you a fair compensation payout

It is worth noting that you do not have to report a data breach to the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) to file a claim for compensation.

Legal Expert has years of experience in handling claims for people who have suffered harm through no fault of their own. We offer everyone who contacts us a free, no-obligation consultation. This first contact allows an experienced adviser the chance to assess your case.

Once satisfied your claim has solid grounds, we would connect you with our data breach lawyers. They’ll get to work on your case right away.

To learn more about our service, why not look at our reviews?

To find out more about making a No Win No Fee data breach claim against the University of Wales, please contact us today.

Data Breach Claims Against The University Of Wales On A No Win No Fee Basis

Once we have established you have grounds to sue for compensation, our solicitors would offer to represent you on a No Win No Fee basis. This is a relatively straightforward process that involves the following:

  • The solicitor sends you an agreement known as a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA). Also referred to as a No Win No Fee Agreement, it is a legal contract that sets out the terms and conditions of the agreement. It also details the percentage payable to your solicitor if you win your claim
  • Once you agree to the terms and conditions as set out in the agreement, you then sign the contract and send it back to the solicitor. Once received, the solicitor can immediately start working on your claim
  • If you win your data breach claim, the solicitor will deduct a small fee from the amount you receive to cover their costs. This fee is capped by law
  • If your data breach claim is unsuccessful, you’re not obligated to cover the success fee and there would be no other legal costs to pay to your solicitor either

To find out whether our solicitors can represent you on a No Win No Fee basis, please reach out to us today.

Talk To Us About Your Case

To discover more about your rights if you’ve fallen victim to a data breach by the University of Wales, please speak to us today. You can reach one of our experienced advisers in the ways below:

Additional Guides

In our final section to this university data breach guide, we’ve included some other resources you may appreciate.

Guide to No Win No Fee claims:

The No Win No Fee Process

Claiming compensation for a Crown Prosecution Service Data breach:

A Guide to Crown Prosecution Service Data Breach Compensation 

Data breach claims against the NHS:

Guide to NHS Data Breach Claims

More information on Data Protection law:

The Data Protection Act

How to complain to the ICO:

Make a complaint to the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO)

Other Useful Compensation Guides

We appreciate you taking the time to read this guide to data breach claims against the University of Wales.

Written – Wood

Edited – Billing

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    • Patrick Mallon

      Patrick is a Grade A solicitor having qualified in 2005. He's an an expert in accident at work and public liability claims and is currently our head of the EL/PL department. Get in touch today for free to see how we can help you.

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