What Is A Stolen Computer Data Breach Claim?
Data protection laws now mean if it is possible to make a stolen computer data breach claim should your personal information be breached due to the failure of those responsible to comply with the UK General Data Protection Regulation (UK GDPR) and the Data Protection Act 2018 (DPA).
In this guide, we’ll look at how a personal data breach could occur as a result of a stolen laptop, computer, or other devices. We will also explain what personal data is, who is responsible for safeguarding it, and how our panel of dedicated personal data breach solicitors could help you make your claim today.
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Select A Section
- Explaining What A Stolen Computer Data Breach Claim Is
- What Devices Could Be Stolen?
- What Data Could A Stolen Computer Hold?
- Steps To Take After A Stolen Computer Data Breach
- What Compensation Could Be Awarded For A Data Breach?
- How We Could Help With A Stolen Computer Data Breach Claim
A personal data breach is a security incident in which the availability, confidentiality, or integrity of your personal data is affected. This means any data that could identify you, such as your:
- Full name
- Phone number
However, to make a stolen computer data breach claim, you must be able to prove that the breach was a result of wrongful conduct on the part of the data controller or the data processor.
Data controllers decide how and why your data is collected. Whereas data processors process this data on the data controller’s behalf. You can find more information on this from the independent body responsible for enforcing data protection law, the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO).
Generally, the time limit for making a personal data breach claim is six years. However, this falls to one year if you are claiming against a public body. For more information on the different types of time limits and how they could impact your claim, get in touch with us today.
There are many types of devices that could be stolen, ranging from desktop computers in an office building to personal laptops or tablets.
Security is one of the seven key principles of data protection law, set out by the UK GDPR. Because of this, if any of these devices are being used to store personal data, the organisation using them must ensure they have the correct security measures in place to keep any personal data secured.
These measures could range from password protection, or ensuring that there is a proper security system in place in an office.
Examples of devices that could store personal data include:
- Desktop computers
- Portable hard drives
- USB sticks
- Mobile phones
To learn more about making a stolen device data breach claim, contact our advisors. They can provide free legal advice and further help with your claim.
Computers have become a large part of modern life. Because of this, many computers contain vast amounts of personal information. This can include both personal data, and a type of personal data called special category data. Special category data needs extra protections according to data protection law, and can include information relating to your:
- Religion or philosophy
- Trade union membership
- Sexual orientation
- Health, such as your medical records
- Biometric data
As we mentioned earlier, regular personal data is any data that could identify you, such as your:
- Bank accounts and debit/credit cards
- Phone number
- Email address
- Full name
- Date of birth
- Home address
In this section, we will outline what steps you could take following a stolen computer data breach. According to the ICO, organisations must inform the ICO within 72 hours if they suffer a data breach that could affect your rights or freedoms. They must also inform you of the breach as soon as possible.
If you suspect a breach of your data has happened, then you can reach out to the company yourself. However, if you do not receive a response or if the response is unsatisfactory, you could make a complaint to the ICO directly. Following this, the ICO could open an investigation into the company and create a report of any findings, which may help to strengthen your claim should you choose to make one.
Contact us today, and our advisors can provide more information on what to do to make a claim for a stolen computer data breach.
Compensation in a data breach claim can be split into two heads: material damages, and non-material damages. Non-material damages aim to provide compensation for the psychological harm you may have endured as a result of the breach.
The Judicial College Guidelines (JCG) are usually used to help value personal injury claims, such as accident at work claims, road traffic accident claims, or medical negligence claims. However, its entries on psychological injuries make it useful for personal data breach claims. You can find some example figures taken from the 2022 edition of the JCG in the table below:
|Psychological Injuries||Brackets of Compensation||Description of Injury|
|Severe - Reactive Psychiatric Disorder||£59,860 to £100,670||Permanent effects prevent work or a return to normal life.|
|Moderately Severe Reactive Psychiatric Disorder||£23,150 to £59,860||Similar to above, but with some chance for recovery with professional help.|
|Moderate Reactive Psychiatric Disorder||£8,180 to £23,150||A near full recovery is achieved, however some symptoms may linger for a period of time.|
|Less Severe Reactive Psychiatric Disorder||£3,950 to £8,180||There has been a full recovery, although some minor symptoms may continue.|
|Psychological Injury: Severe||£54,830 to £115,730||A great impact on a person's daily routine. Affecting relationships and the ability to cope with daily life.|
|Psychological Injury: Moderately Severe||£19,070 to £54,830||Illnesses that can affect all parts of claimant's life but there could be a better prognosis than the more severe category.|
|Psychological Injury: Moderate||£5,860 to £19,070||Symptoms that show significant improvement by the time of trial.|
|Psychological Injury: Less Severe||£1,540 to £5,860||The award will be dependent on factors such as issues with daily life and sleep.|
Material damages relate to any financial harm you may have suffered as a result of the breach. For example, these could be fraudulent purchases made on a credit card, damage to your credit score, or unauthorised withdrawals made from your account. You must provide proof of these losses to make a valid claim.
Since the Court of Appeals ruling through Vidal-Hall & Others v Google Inc. , you can now claim for non-material damages without claiming for material damages alongside them.
To learn more about compensation for a stolen computer data breach claim, you can get in touch with our team of advisors. They can offer free legal advice, along with a free estimate of what your claim could be worth.
Under a CFA, you only pay your solicitor a fee if your claim succeeds. Your solicitor will take this fee from your final award, but it is important to note that there is a legal cap in place to ensure you get the majority of your compensation. However, if your claim fails, you do not pay this fee.
Learn how a solicitor from our panel could help you start your stolen computer data breach claim today. To get in touch, you can:
For more helpful personal data breach articles, we recommend:
- Could you claim for stress due to a data breach?
- Data subject rights following a breach of data protection
- Data breach via email, how much could I claim?
Additionally, for more information:
- ICO – How to minimise the risk of personal data breaches happening
- ICO – Your data matters
- ICO – Report a breach
If you need any more advice or guidance on making a claim for a stolen computer data breach, contact us today.