Abuse Victim Data Breach Guide – Can I Claim Compensation?
If you are an abuse victim and a data breach has compromised your personal data, you may be wondering if you can claim. This guide will look at breaches of abuse victims’ data. This information could relate to the abuse, the criminal case or any information concerning the incident.
Additionally, this guide will discuss how your personal data could have been compromised and the consequences you could suffer as a result of this. Furthermore, we will explore how much data breach compensation you could potentially receive should you make successful claim.
We will also discuss the legislation in place to protect the personal data of UK residents, and the criteria in place to determine who is eligible to claim.
Our advisors are available to answer any questions you may have about making a claim if you are an abuse victim and a data breach has caused you harm. They can offer free legal advice and further help when you get in touch today:
Select A Section
- What Is An Abuse Victim Data Breach?
- What Information Could Be Disclosed?
- How Could The Information Be Disclosed?
- Abuse Victim Data Breach Case Study
- What Could I Claim If My Information Has Been Disclosed?
- Check If You Can Claim For An Abuse Victim Data Breach With A No Win No Fee Agreement
A personal data breach is a security incident where your personal information is lost, destroyed or altered unlawfully or accidentally. It also includes the unauthorised access or disclosure of your personal data. Any information that identifies you directly or in combination with other information is considered as personal data.
Any organisation that processes your personal data must comply with data protection legislation. The rules and obligations organisations must adhere to when processing personal data are outlined in the UK General Data Protection Regulation (UK GDPR) and the Data Protection Act 2018 (DPA).
If an organisation were to fail to protect your personal data, this could cause you to suffer financial loss or mental harm. However, in order to claim, you must suffer harm, and the breach must occur as a result of the organisation’ failings.
Contact our advisors today to see if you could make a claim if personal information revealing that you were an abuse victim was in a data breach.
Various organisations could hold information that reveals you suffered abuse. For example, the police may hold personal information about you concerning a domestic abuse court case. Some personal information they could hold may include:
Additionally, certain organisations may hold special category data about you. This is a type of personal data that needs extra protection because it is sensitive. Some special category information organisations could hold about you include:
- Data concerning your health
- Data concerning your sexual orientation
- Any data concerning your philosophical and religious beliefs
- Genetic data
- Data that concerns your racial or ethnic origin
If any personal information concerning that you were an abuse victim was in a data breach, you could make a claim. Contact our advisors today to see whether you have a valid claim.
Generally, most data breaches can be classified as cyber or non-cyber incidents. An example of a cyber incident could be personal data being accessed during a cyber attack.
Additionally, some data breaches caused by human error could be classed as non-cyber incidents. Some examples of how your personal information could be breached due to human error include:
- Failure to redact personal information from a document before it is shared
- Paperwork containing your personal information is not locked away or secured, and this allows an unauthorised party to access it
- Your personal data is sent to the wrong person, e.g, sent to the wrong email address
If you can prove that personal information revealing that you were an abuse victim was in a data breach, you could make a claim. However, you will need to prove that the organisation’s failings caused the breach and that you suffered mentally or financially.
Contact our advisors today if you are unsure whether you have a valid personal data breach claim.
Data Breaches Affecting Local Government And Healthcare
Organisations are required to report any personal data breaches that they think will affect people’s rights and freedoms to the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO). Based on these reports, the ICO then provides data security incident trends for each financial quater.
Between 2019 to the 2nd financial quater of 2022, there were 32,541 incidents reported to the ICO. Of those reported incidents, 2,925 were attributed to local government and 6,035 to the health sector.
In 2020, Hackney Council failed to use the appropriate privacy settings on the website Trello. As a result, an un-redacted spreadsheet containing the addresses and names of women in temporary accommodation for their safety was made public.
The breach also included a screenshot showing a vulnerable tenant’s national insurance number and address. The Mayor of Hackney apologised for the breach, and made assurances that the issues were corrected as soon as they were made aware of them.
Contact our advisors today to see whether you could make a claim if personal information concerning that you were an abuse victim was in a data breach.
If you make a successful personal data breach claim, your settlement may consist of material and non-material damage.
Material damage aims to compensate you for your financial losses due to your personal data being breached. For example, if your credit card or banking information was involved in a bank account data breach, you could experience money being taken from your account or charges being made to your card. Providing a copy of your bank statements stating these financial losses could help support you in your claim for material damage.
Furthermore, non-material damage aims to compensate you for the psychological harm you have suffered due to the personal data breach. For example, you may have suffered depression or anxiety after a data breach. Providing a copy of your medical records stating your psychological injuries could help support your claim for non-material damage.
Below, we have created a compensation table to help you understand how much you could potentially claim for non-material damage. We have used the amounts listed in the 16th edition of the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG) when creating this table, as the JCG provides guideline settlement amounts for a number of injuries and illnesses.
Many legal professionals use the JCG to help them value claims. However, how much compensation you could receive will depend on your specific claim, so you should only use this table as a guide.
|Type of Harm||Comments||Amount|
|Psychological Harm||Severe (a): A poor prognosis with permanent effects that will impact daily life and close relationships.||£54,830 to £115,730|
|Psychological Harm||Moderately Severe (b): A more optimistic prognosis than above, but the person will still struggle with aspects of life.||£19,070 to £54,830|
|Psychological Harm||Moderate (c): A good prognosis with significant improvements in symptoms by the time of trial.||£5,860 to £19,070|
|Psychological Harm||Less Severe (d): Compensation awarded will depend on how much various activities, such as sleep, were impacted.||£1,540 to £5,860|
|Reactive Anxiety Disorder||Severe (a): All aspects of working and daily life will be negatively impacted. They will be unable to function as they did pre-trauma.||£59,860 to £100,670|
|Reactive Anxiety Disorder||Moderately Severe (b): A more positive prognosis with room for some recovery with medical help. However, the person will still suffer significantly for the foreseeable future.||£23,150 to £59,860|
|Reactive Anxiety Disorder||Moderate (c): A large recovery with only slight symptoms persisting.||£8,180 to £23,150|
|Reactive Anxiety Disorder||Less Severe (d): An almost full recovery within 1 to 2 years with only minor symptoms persisting after this time.||£3,950 to £8,180|
Contact our advisors to see whether you could claim if personal information revealing you are an abuse victim was in a data breach.
If you are an abuse victim and a data breach has caused you harm, you might want to make a claim. If you decide that you would like to be legally represented in your claim, a solicitor from our panel could help by providing their services through a No Win No Fee agreement known as a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA).
Usually, with a No Win No Fee agreement, you aren’t expected to pay anything upfront to your solicitor to begin working on your claim, nor will you pay any ongoing fees to your solicitor. The only fee your solicitor will take is a success fee, which they will only take if your claim succeeds. If it doesn’t, you don’t pay this fee.
If you would like to learn more about No Win No Fee agreements or would like to know if you have a valid claim, you can contact our advisors today. Our friendly team of advisors can offer you free legal advice. Additionally, they can answer any of your personal data breach claim questions 24/7.
To talk to an advisor today:
If you would like to read more articles about personal data breach claims:
- Failure to redact data breach compensation claims
- Lost device data breach compensation claims
- What is a psychiatrist data breach compensation claim?
Or, if you are looking for additional information:
- Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) – Personal data breaches
- UK GOV – Domestic violence disclosure scheme: guidance
- NHS – Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
If personal information concerning the fact that you were an abuse victim was in a data breach, you could make a claim. Contact our advisors today for some free legal advice.
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