Data Breach Compensation Examples – What Could You Claim?

Data Breach Compensation Examples

Data Breach Compensation Examples

By Stephen Moreau. Last Updated 4th October 2023. Have you suffered harm from a data breach? Are you looking for data breach compensation examples? This article will examine different types of data breach compensation damages as well as provide statistics for data breaches. We will also elaborate on the criteria for making a personal data breach claim and how No Win No Fee solicitors could help you. 

When personal information is breached it cannot only cause financial implications but also have a bearing on a person’s mental health. 

If you believe you have been subjected to a data breach, then get in touch with our advisors today. They are available all day and can determine whether you have grounds for a claim and they may pass it to our panel of No Win No Fee solicitors who can help begin the claiming process. Contact our advisors by: 

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  1. Data Breach Compensation Amounts In The UK
  2. When Can I Claim A Data Breach Compensation Amount?
  3. What Is A Personal Data Breach?
  4. Examples of How A Data Breach Can Happen
  5. What Evidence Do I Need To Make A Data Breach Claim?
  6. Begin Your No Win No Fee Data Breach Claim Today

Data Breach Compensation Amounts In The UK

You could potentially claim compensation for a data breach if you suffered harm due to the compromise of your personal data. Due to the ruling in the Vidal-Hall and others v Google Inc (2015) Court of Appeal case, if you suffered psychological harm, such as anxiety, after a data breach you can claim for this without also claiming for material damage. Prior to this, you could only claim for your stress due to a data breach if you also claimed for monetary losses at the same time.

Legal professionals use the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG) to help assign value to psychological suffering in data breach claims. This document provides compensation brackets for various injuries, including mental health damage.

The table below contains claiming guidance for psychological injuries from the latest update. Different factors will be considered when this head of your claim is assessed; as such, it should only be taken as rough guidance.

Severe mental damage £54,830 to £115,730The claimant will have a poor prognosis as all aspects of the person's life will be negatively affected.
Moderately severe mental damage £19,070 to £54,830Work and social life as well as relationships will be greatly affected. There is a more optimistic prognosis than above if professional help is sought.
Moderate mental damage £5,860 to £19,070Good overall recovery any symptoms that remain should not be too significant.
Less severe mental damage £1,540 to £5,860The amount the persons life is affected and how long the disability lasts will play a major role here.
Severe PTSD£59,860 to £100,670Post traumatic stress disorder as its most severe and a return to pre trauma levels will not be possible.
Moderately severe PTSD£23,150 to £59,860Some recovery can be achieved with the right professional help.
Moderate PTSD£8,180 to £23,150A good recovery will have already been achieved minor symptoms may persist.
Less severe PTSD£3,950 to £8,180A near full recovery within 1-2 years.

Data Breach Compensation Examples – Material Damage

Material damage relates to any financial losses or expenses you’ve incurred as a result of your personal data being breached. For example, if your credit card details were lost or misused, your finances might be affected.

Other examples of data breaches and the material damage caused may include:

  • Your identity being stolen using your personal data and making fraudulent purchases on your behalf. Your credit score could also be impacted.
  • Your bank account being hacked, and your money being stolen as a result.

It’s important to collect evidence to prove any material damage you have suffered. Without any evidence, you are unlikely to receive data breach compensation. For example:

  • Bank statements
  • Invoices or receipts
  • Credit score rating or report

Get in touch if you would like to discuss data breach compensation examples in further detail. We could put you in touch with a data protection breach solicitor from our panel and they can assess any compensation you may be awarded in terms of material and non-material damage.

When Can I Claim A Data Breach Compensation Amount?

Data controllers and data processors must adhere to the Data Protection Act 2018 and the UK General Data Protection Regulation. Controllers set the purpose for processing and processors act on their instruction. If they failed to adhere to these pieces of legislation it could lead to a personal data breach. 

In order to make a personal data breach claim, you must prove the following:

  • There were failings on the part of the controller or processor to adhere to the UK GDPR and DPA 2018.
  • This led to your personal data being compromised in a breach.
  • You experienced financial loss, emotional harm, or both as a result. 

Continue reading to find out more about what a personal data breach is and how one could occur. Alternatively, call an advisor on the number above to discuss your eligibility to seek data breach compensation amounts.

What Is A Personal Data Breach?

To understand data breach compensation examples, it would be helpful to break the terms down. A data breach happens when your personal data, as a data subject, has been compromised in a security incident. Personal data is any identifiable information such as:

  • Name
  • Date of birth
  • Email address
  • Home address

The data security incident could involve personal data being altered, lost, disclosed, destroyed or accessed without a lawful basis. Some examples of data breaches can include:

  • An email containing personal data was sent to the wrong email address
  • Lost USBs containing personal medical files on public transport
  • Improper use of Bcc (blind carbon copy)

In situations where data subjects make a successful data breach claim they will have supported their case with evidence that personal data was breached. Also showing how those who should have protected their data failed to take the necessary action and that they suffered harm, financially and/or mentally as a result.

There are two main entities that have a role to play when protecting personal data they handle:

  • Data controllers – They lay out the purpose and means of processing your data.
  • Data processors – An external third party that data controllers use to process your data.

Continue to read for data breach compensation examples and what you could possibly claim. 

Examples of How A Data Breach Can Happen

There are several ways a data breach might typically occur, for example, through a cyber crime, such as a ransomware attack or phishing scam, or as a result of a human error. In this section, we focus on human error examples of a data breach.

As such, examples of how a data breach can happen as a result of human error can include:

  • An organisation may fail to use BCC (blind carbon copy) when sending out an email, exposing your email address to any other recipients.
  • A letter containing your personal information being sent to the wrong postal address by an organisation, despite having your correct home address on file.
  • An employer discussing your personal data with the wrong person over the phone due to failing to carry out the necessary identity checks.

In cases where data controllers fail to adhere to data security legislation, the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) can penalise the companies who have breached data protection legislation. The highest amount that can be fined is £17.5 million or 4% of the total annual worldwide turnover. They will take whichever amount is higher.  

Contact our advisors whenever it is most convenient for you. They are available 24/7 and can discuss the data breach compensation you could be awarded following a successful claim.

What Evidence Do I Need To Make A Data Breach Claim?

To be eligible to start a data breach claim, you will need evidence of the material or non-material damage the breach of your personal data has caused. You’ll also need evidence that establishes that a data controller or data processor failed to comply with data protection legislation, and that this is what led to the personal data breach

Evidence may include the following:

  • A letter of notification from the organisation responsible confirming that the breach occurred and that it affected your personal data.
  • Medical records or the results of an independent medical assessment confirming that you suffered from emotional or mental distress as a result of the breach.
  • Letters or emails to or from the ICO, such as the results of an investigation, a statement regarding the breach, or the results of a complaint you lodged.
  • Evidence of any financial losses, such as bank statements that show money stolen from your account.

For more advice on collecting evidence when claiming for a data breach, or to discuss other matters such as data breach compensation examples, contact our advisors today.

Begin Your No Win No Fee Data Breach Claim Today

After reading about data breach compensation examples, you may want to claim. Having a solicitor help with the process of making a data breach claim can make the whole process feel a lot easier. They cannot only gather the relevant information and evidence needed to prove your claim but they can also use the appropriate laws to show who may be liable in your case. 

If you are worried about solicitor fees why not opt for No Win No Fee solicitors who offer their service through a Conditional Fee Agreement(CFA). 

Hiring a lawyer this way requires no upfront cost and you pay no money to your lawyer if your claim fails. Your lawyer will only take a success fee if your claim succeeds. The fee is a lawfully-capped percentage of your compensation that they take to cover their service.

Contact our advisors today and they can help determine whether your claim is valid and they may pass it to our panel of No Win No Fee lawyers who can help start your claim. Get in touch today by:

Read More About Data Protection Breaches

Please see our other informative articles:

How To Calculate Special Damages In Your Injury Claim

What Percentage Do Solicitors Take For No Win No Fee Claims In The UK?

There Was No Witness To My Accident, Can I Still Claim?

South Staffordshire Water Data Breach Guide

Or, these other helpful links:

Understanding Secure Email

Email Marketing Guidelines From The ICO

Personal Data Breaches Guide By The ICO

Contact our advisors for free legal advice about data breach examples and compensation today.