07 January, 2020
The Government are likely to face a number of claims for compensation following the leak of personal data into the public domain after 1,097 work and home addresses were published online, including those of celebrities, politicians, diplomats and senior police officers*.
The General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) provide that personal information must be processed in a manner that ensures appropriate security of personal data, including protection against unauthorised or unlawful processing, accidental loss, and destruction or damage, through use of appropriate technical or organisational measures.
In this recent case, the information has been released without authority, a clear breach of General Data Protection Regulations .
General Data Protection Regulation is a developing area of law. In order to claim damages for a breach of data, an individual will have to demonstrate that the breach has caused some harm and/or loss.
The aim of compensation is to try and place the individual back in the same position as if the breach had not taken place. The compensation awarded can include injury to feelings and any consequential financial loss. The bands of damages can be summarised as follows:
In very serious cases, aggravated Damages can be awarded where:
The release of individuals private addresses will impact some more than others. It might be said that Elton John's address can easily be located by a quick search via the internet and the impact is less for him, however anyone with a lesser profile may not be so easy to locate. If for example they have to move for fear of harassment, the impact is far greater and the damages are likely to be more significant.
The Information commissioner will no doubt be looking into this. The ICO doesn't have the authority to award compensation, but they can impose heavy fines.
If you have suffered a breach of data please contact our Data Breach Claims team on 01254 872111.
For more information contact John Bennett in our Data Breach Claims department via email or phone on 01254 872111. Alternatively send any question through to Forbes Solicitors via our online Contact Form.