In this guide we explore what steps you could take should your personal data be compromised in a data breach of disciplinary information.
There is legislation in place to protect the personal data of individuals. We explore what this legislation is and what the types of data it protects. Under the legislation, you might be entitled to data breach compensation. However, we will explore the eligibility criteria in more detail throughout this guide.
Additionally, we look at how organisations could breach your personal data and the evidence you could gather to prove your potential claim.
Furthermore, we explore a type of No Win No Fee arrangement that a data breach solicitor from our panel could offer. The arrangement we will look at is called a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA) and is a way you can fund legal representation.
If you’ve experienced a personal data breach, our advisors can answer any questions about your potential claim.
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Select A Section
- What Is A Data Breach Of Disciplinary Information?
- What Will I Need To Show Before I File A Claim?
- When Could You Claim For A Data Breach Of Disciplinary Information?
- Do You Have To Go To Court To Get Compensation?
- What Could You Claim For A Data Breach Of Disciplinary Information?
- Begin A Claim
A data breach is a security incident involving personal data. It may be destroyed, lost or altered either accidentally or unlawfully. It may also be subject to unauthorised disclosure or access.
Two key pieces of legislation help protect your personal data by setting out a data controller and data processors responsibilities. A data controller decides how and why they will use your personal data and may process it themselves. A data processor acts on behalf of the controller.
- Data subjects are granted rights over the processing of their data.
- Either a data controller or processor could be held responsible should they fail to comply with data protection laws and a breach occurs.
If you have evidence that your data was compromised in a data breach of disciplinary information, call our team. They can advise on whether your claim is justified.
Workplace Data Breach Statistics
A data breach of disciplinary information could be experienced by various workplaces. The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) was set up to help protect data subject rights and freedoms.
As part of their role, they monitor data security incident trends. The graph below contains reported incidents in general business, retail and manufacturing and charitable and voluntary sectors for the fourth financial quarter of 2021/22.
As part of your data breach of disciplinary information compensation claim, you will need to prove your personal data was compromised in the breach. You will also need to prove you sustained financial damage or psychological harm.
Personal data is information that relates to you and could be used to either directly or indirectly identify you. Examples could include:
- Postal address
- Email address
- Phone number
- National insurance number
- Bank account details
- Credit card or debit card details
Additionally, there is other personal information that is more sensitive and requires more protection. This is known as special category data and could include:
- Information relating to a trade union membership
- Medical data
- Racial or ethnic background
- Political beliefs
- Sexual orientation
All personal data is protected by the GDPR. There are different types of personal information that could be found in disciplinary or employment records.
Therefore, your employer, as a data controller, must adhere to data protection law. If they don’t, and you are caused psychological harm or financial damage, you may be able to seek compensation.
Contact our team if you have evidence that your employer breached data protection law.
Article 82 of the UK GDPR sets out your right to compensation if your details are compromised in a data breach. Specific eligibility applies, however. As such:
- You must be able to prove that an organisation failed to adhere to data protection laws.
- Their failings resulted in your personal data being compromised.
- You suffered, either financially or mentally, such as experiencing stress.
For example, a member of staff in the human resources department of your workplace could leave your disciplinary records in an unlocked filing cabinet. As a result, someone unathorised may gain access to your disciplinary records due to human error.
Organisations should ensure that staff with data access are trained in data protection. This could include training to ensure any paperwork containing personal details are kept secure. Additionally, it could include training to ensure that emails are sent to the correct recipient.
Organisations should also take steps to ensure their cybersecurity systems are kept up to date. This could reduce the risk of hackers gaining access to digital files.
If you experienced any ill-effects due to a data breach of disciplinary information, contact our advisors for free legal advice.
Whether or not you have to go to court for a data breach of disciplinary information depends on several factors. Firstly, if a breach is likely to infringe your rights and freedoms, the organisation should inform you without undue delay. They should include what data was compromised so you can take steps to protect yourself. This may not always happen, however.
If you have reason to suspect a data breach, such as receiving nuisance phone calls, you should report this to the organisation. If they do not respond, or their response is inadequate, you can then report this to the ICO. The ICO may carry out investigations and their findings could be used as evidence to support your case, if you’re able to make a claim.
When you make a data breach claim, an organisation may offer you compensation. If you accept this first offer, you will not have to attend court. Once your claim is settled, however, you cannot reopen it. You might want to seek legal advice before accepting an offer. A specialist data breach solicitor can ensure that you receive a fair settlement.
There are additional factors impacting whether or not you will go to court. The organisation may deny liability. Further evidence may be required as well. Additionally, the claim may be complex, such as if due to the data breach, you have ended up with a stalker.
Free legal advice on your next steps is available from our advisors. If you have a valid claim, they may connect you to our No Win No Fee data breach solicitors.
Two heads could make up your settlement following a successful claim. Material damages recovers financial losses due to the data breach. This could include the financial impact you experienced due to someone gaining unauthorised access to your credit card information. You will need to submit evidence, however, such as bank statements.
Whereas non-material damages compensates for emotional distress, such as post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), caused by the breach.
In the past, you could only claim for your emotional distress if you were also claiming for financial losses as well. However, the Vidal-Hall and others v. Google Inc. (2015) Court of Appeal set a precedent that allowed claimants to seek compensation for psychological harm independent of financial losses.
To help assign value to the non-material damages head of claim, legal professionals can refer to the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG). This document provides compensation brackets for different types of psychological injuries. We’ve provided figures from the 16th edition, published in April 2022, to create the table below.
However, you should only use them as a guide because other factors will be considered when valuing your claim. For instance, in severe cases, your attendance at an independent medical assessment might be required. This allows for a better understanding of the extent of your psychological damage.
|Anxiety Disorder||Severe (a)||£59,860 - £100,670||The symptoms do not allow for the claimant to function at pre-trauma levels. This is permanent and badly impacts every aspect of life.|
|Anxiety Disorder||Moderately severe (b)||£23,150 - £59,860||A significant disability occurs. This lasts into the foreseeable future. However, some recovery is possible with professional assistance.|
|Anxiety Disorder||Moderate (c)||£8,180 - £23,150||The claimant largely makes a recovery, but some non-grossly disabling symptoms linger.|
|Anxiety Disorder||Less severe (d)||£3,950 - £8,180||There may be minor symptoms lasting past two years, but the claimant has virtually made a full recovery.|
|Psychological damage||Severe (a)||£54,830 - £115,730||A very poor prognosis from severe psychological damage. There is an impact on coping with life, relationships and other areas of the person's life.|
|Psychological damage||Moderately severe (b)||£19,070 - £54,830||Significant problems occur with life and relationships, but the prognosis is more optimistic than in cases of severe psychological damage.|
|Psychological damage||Moderate (c)||£5,860 - £19,070||Problems occur coping in life and with relationships, but there have been improvements. The prognosis is good.|
|Psychological damage||Less severe (d)||£1,540 - £5,860||A period of disability occurs. This impacts the claimant's daily activities and ability to sleep.|
Contact our advisors to learn more about how damages are calculated.
You could hire a specialist data breach solicitor from our panel using a No Win No Fee arrangement. They offer their services under a Conditional Fee Agreement.
As such, you won’t be charged an upfront fee or ongoing costs for the services they provide you. A success fee is taken from the awards of successful claims. However, legal caps apply. Unsuccessful claims will not be subject to the success fee.
If your personal data was compromised in a data breach of disciplinary information, our team can help you with your next steps. They offer free legal advice. If you have evidence and your claim is eligible, you may be put into contact with our panel of No Win No Fee data breach solicitors.
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Articles Related To Disciplinary Data Breaches
Below, we have provided some additional resources that may prove beneficial.
- NHS- Stress Guide
- GOV- Making a Data Protection Complaint
- ICO- Your Rights
- Bank Data Breach Compensation Claims
- Loan Provider Data Breach Claims
- Patient Medical Records Data Breach Claims
We hope this guide on when you can claim after a data breach of disciplinary information has helped. Call us for more information.
Written by DSB
Edited by MMI