By Danielle Graves. Last Updated 6th October 2023. Are you wondering if an employer can share your personal information with other employees in the UK? If a personal data breach in the workplace has lead to you suffering harm, you may be able to claim compensation.
In this article, we will explain what data your employer may handle, how this information could be shared with other employees, and the reasons a data breach at work could occur.
Furthermore, we will also explore whether you have the right to claim, how compensation is calculated in personal data breach claims, and how our panel of expert solicitors could help you begin the legal process.
If you would like to know if you could make a claim, then talk to our advisors today. They can provide you with free and relevant legal advice, as well as a free consultation. It is also possible that you may be put in touch with our panel of No Win No Fee solicitors who can help you begin the claiming process with expert legal representation. Contact our advisors today by:
Select A Section
- What Data Can An Employer Hold?
- How Could Your Employer Share Personal Information With Other Employees In The UK?
- Can My Employer Share My Personal Information With Other Employees In The UK?
- Can I Claim If My Employer Did Share My Personal Information With Other Employees In The UK?
- How To Prove A Personal Data Breach Claim
- What Could You Claim If Your Employer Shares Your Personal Information?
- Begin Your No Win No Fee Claim
Personal information is any data that can identify you as an individual and can include your:
- Email address
- Postal address
- Credit or debit card details
- Banking information
However, an employer may also have access to your special category data. This is a kind of personal data that needs extra protection, and can include information regarding your:
- Religion or philosophy
- Race and ethnicity
- Sexual orientation and gender
- Health, such as your medical data
If a security incident compromises the integrity, availability, and confidentiality of your information, then this is called a personal data breach. Find out if your employer can share your personal information with other employees in the UK by reading on, or get in touch with our advisors today to start your claim.
A personal data breach could occur in the workplace for a number of reasons. With this in mind, some examples of personal data breaches that could occur in the workplace include:
- Your employer shares personal data from your human resources files with an unauthorised person
- An employer sends your disciplinary information to the wrong email address, and this allows an unauthorised coworker access to your personal data
- Your employer verbally discloses personal data about your medical conditions to a colleague without authorisation
To learn more about whether you could make a personal data breach claim, get in touch with our team today. Alternatively, read on to learn more about data breach compensation.
There are some circumstances under which your employer can lawfully share your presonal information with other employees. Your employer could serve the role of both data controller and data processor. This means that they decide how and why to use your data, and they may also process this data themselves.
A data controller is responsible for establishing a lawful basis for processing your personal data. The lawful bases for processing personal data are set out in Article 6 of the UK GDPR. It is unlawful to process personal data without first establishing a lawful basis, and this includes consent. However, consent is only one of these bases, so it is possible that your employer could lawfully share your personal information without your consent.
Get in touch with our advisors to find out if you can claim.
A we have already mentioned, not every breach of data protection can form the basis of a valid personal data breach claim. This is because the breach must be caused by the failings of the data controller and data processor, and it must also cause you to experience harm.
If your employer shares your personal information with other employees in the UK, you can make a complaint to the organisation you work for. However, if they do not provide a satisfactory response, or if they don’t respond at all, you can then take your complaint to the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO).
The ICO is an independent watchdog based in the UK. They enforce data protection legislation, but they do not handle claims, nor do they offer compensation. However, the ICO does have the power to investigate a breach, and they may also levy a fine against the organisation found to be responsible. Correspondence with the ICO and the organisation at fault can also be used as evidence to help strengthen your claim.
You must also ensure that you start your claim within the time limit. Generally, you will have six years to begin a personal data breach claim. But, if you intend to make a claim against a public body, then this will fall to one year.
To find out if your could be eligible to make a claim, get in touch with our advisors today. Or, read on to find out how a solicitor from our panel could be of assistance to you.
If you are seeking data breach compensation, then you must have evidence that supports your claim. This needs to show that it was the wrongful conduct of either the data controller or processor that caused the personal data breach as well as the harm you suffered.
Here are some examples of evidence that could be useful for a data breach claim:
- The ‘letter of notification’. An organisation, such as your employer, must inform you of a breach involving your personal data without undue delay if this compromise presents a risk to your freedoms and rights. They can do so with a letter of notification.
- The findings from an investigation conducted by the ICO. As part of their role in protecting data rights, the ICO can investigate certain data breaches and issue fines as necessary. Organisations have 72 hours to alert the ICO to a reportable data security incident. Alternatively, you could report a breach to the ICO. However, you must do this within three months of your last meaningful communication with the organisation about the breach.
- If you are claiming for mental health issues caused by the data breach, such as depression or anxiety, your medical records stating your diagnosis can be submitted to support this.
- If you are seeking compensation for your financial damage, you could submit copies of your bank statements or credit reports.
If you would like to discuss, ‘Can my employer share my personal information with other employees in the UK?’, speak with an advisor from our team. They can also give you free advice about what evidence you could submit.
In a successful data breach claim, there are two heads of compensation you could receive, which include:
- Material damage compensation – This covers the financial impacts of a personal data breach. For example, a credit card a credit card breach can lead to monetary losses, identity impersonation, and fraudulent loans, as well as an impacted credit score.
- Non-material damage compensation – Psychiatric injuries including anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, paranoia, and stress could be caused by a breach.
The amount you could receive in non-material damage compensation depends on a number of factors, so there are no average payouts that we can provide. However,the psychological injuries table below provides guideline settlement brackets provided by the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG). This is a document that aids legal professionals in valuing claims.
|Severe psychiatric harm||£54,830 to £115,730||Where there are problems with everyday life activities such as employment and education, and future vulnerabilities, leading to a very poor prognosis|
|Moderately severe psychiatric harm||£19,070 to £54,830||Symptoms are similar to the bracket above, though the prognosis is more optimistic.|
|Moderate psychiatric harm||£5,860 to £19,070||The prognosis in this bracket is more optimistic, as symptoms show improvement.|
|Less severe psychiatric harm||£1,540 to £5,860||The award received takes into account the disability period and the effect an injury has on the individual's daily activities and sleep.|
|Severe PTSD||£59,860 to £100,670||Severe and permanent symptoms mean the claimant can no longer function nor work at the pre-trauma level.|
|Moderately severe PTSD||£23,150 to £59,860||Professional aid can result in a better prognosis.|
|Moderate PTSD||£8,180 to £23,150||Large recovery has taken place, with minor symptoms continuing that are not debilitating.|
|Less severe PTSD||£3,950 to £8,180||In a two-year period, the person will achieve a virtually full recovery, though some minor symptoms may persist.|
Contact our advisors today if you are wondering whether you could claim. They can answer your questions and provide advice on the data breach compensation claiming process.
Beginning a personal data breach claim can feel daunting. However, the help of an experienced No Win No Fee solicitor could make the process feel less stressful. A solicitor from our panel could help ensure that your claim is filed in full, along with providing expert representation and legal advice.
Our panel offer these services through a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA). A CFA typically provides you with access to legal representation and counsel without requiring an upfront fee to be paid to your solicitor. Generally, the only fee your solicitor will take under a CFA is a success fee if your claim succeeds. Otherwise, you will not be asked to pay your solicitor for their services.
Our advisors can tell you if you have a valid claim. If so, then they may connect you with one of our panel’s solicitors. To learn more, get in touch by:
Please see our other useful data breach articles:
- Solicitor Data Breach Claims
- How Do I Report A Data Protection Breach?
- Recruitment Agency Data Breach
Or, for more helpful external resources:
Contact our team if you have further questions on whether your employer can share your personal information with other employees in the UK.
Written by JE
Edited by CH