Data breaches are becoming increasingly common, and they can have serious consequences for individuals whose personal data has been compromised. If you have been affected by a GDPR breach, you may be entitled to compensation for any losses or harm you have suffered as a result. In this guide, we will explain how much compensation you can claim for a GDPR breach, and provide you with the information you need to make a successful claim. If you have been affected by a data breach and need help or advice, please do not hesitate to get in touch with us.
- Call us on 0800 408 7827
- Contact us by completing the online form.
- Or speak to us via our live chat feature.
What is a GDPR breach?
Under the UK GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation), enshrined into UK law in the Data Protection Act 2018, a GDPR breach occurs when there is a breach of security that leads to the accidental or unlawful destruction, loss, alteration, unauthorised disclosure of, or access to, personal data. A GDPR breach can include a range of situations, including cyber-attacks, phishing scams, and employee negligence. If you have been affected by a GDPR breach, you may be entitled to claim compensation for any harm you have suffered.
How Can A GDPR Breach Happen?
A GDPR breach can occur in many ways, including:
- Loss or theft of personal data – This could happen if an individual’s personal information is stolen or lost, such as a laptop or mobile device that contains personal information being stolen.
- Hacking – A data breach can happen if a hacker gains unauthorised access to a company’s computer system and steals personal information.
- Unauthorised access – Personal data may be accessed by individuals who do not have permission to view it. For example, an employee accessing a colleague’s personal data without a legitimate reason.
- Human error – Personal data may be lost or disclosed by mistake, for example, emailing sensitive data to the wrong recipient.
- Inadequate security measures – A GDPR breach can occur if a company fails to implement appropriate security measures to protect personal data, such as failing to encrypt personal data.
If you believe you could have a claim for compensation, please contact an advisor. They could help ascertain how much compensation for a GDPR breach you could claim.
How to identify if you have been affected by a GDPR breach
If you suspect that you have been affected by a GDPR breach, you should contact the organisation that holds your data and ask for confirmation. You can also check the ICO’s website for information on recent data breaches, as organisations are required to report certain types of breaches to the ICO.
Who Is Eligible To Claim?
To be eligible to make a claim for compensation following a GDPR breach, the following criteria must be met:
- You must have suffered financial loss or distress as a result of the data breach.
- The data breach must have been caused by the organisation’s wrongful actions and failure to comply with its obligations under the GDPR.
- The data breach must typically have occurred within the past six years, as claims for compensation must be made within this timeframe under the Limitation Act 1980.
- You must have taken reasonable steps to minimise any loss or damage suffered as a result of the data breach.
It is important to note that not all data breaches will result in a successful compensation claim, and each case will be assessed on its individual merits.
How to Make a Data Breach Claim
If you think you may have a data breach claim, the first step is to seek legal advice from a advisor experienced in data breach claims.
Your solicitor will be able to advise you on the merits of your case and the evidence you will need to support your claim. They will also be able to help you gather the necessary evidence, such as witness statements and medical reports.
Once your solicitor has assessed the strength of your claim, they will send a letter of claim to the organisation responsible for the breach. This letter will set out the details of your claim and the compensation you are seeking.
The organisation will then have a period of time to investigate the claim and respond. If liability is accepted, your solicitor will negotiate a settlement on your behalf. If liability is denied, your solicitor may need to take the case to court.
What Evidence Is Required To Support A Claim?
To make a successful data breach claim, you will need to provide evidence to support your claim. This may include copies of any correspondence you have had with the data controller or processor, any evidence of financial loss, and any medical reports or other evidence of emotional distress. An experienced legal expert can help you gather the evidence you need to support your claim.
What Damages Can I Claim?
The types of harm that can be compensated in a data breach claim include financial loss, emotional distress, and loss of privacy. For example, if your bank account has been fraudulently accessed as a result of a data breach, you may be able to claim compensation for any money that was stolen. If you have suffered emotional distress, such as anxiety or depression, as a result of the breach, you may be able to claim compensation for this as well.
How Much Compensation For A GDPR Breach Will I Recieve?
The amount of compensation you can claim for a GDPR breach will depend on the severity of the breach and the harm you have suffered.
For material damages, the compensation should reflect your financial losses.
Additionally, for non-material damages, such as those for psychological harm, the Judicial College Guidelines provide a framework for calculating compensation in personal injury claims, including claims for distress caused by a data breach. These guidelines set out a range of compensation levels for different types of injury, from minor to severe.
- Severe injuries- £54,830 to £115,730
- Moderately severe injuries – £19,070 to £54,830
- Moderate injuries- £5,860 to £19,070
- Less Severe injuries – £1,540 to £5,860
While these guidelines are not binding, they can be used by courts when assessing compensation. Therefore, your solicitor will be able to advise you on the likely amount of compensation you could receive based on the specific circumstances of your case.
No Win No Fee Data Breach Claims
Many solicitors now offer No Win No Fee agreements for data breach claims. This means that you will not have to pay any legal fees upfront, and you will only pay your solicitor if your claim is successful.
Under a No Win No Fee agreement, your solicitor not take a fee if your claim is unsuccessful. If your claim is successful, your solicitor will be entitled to a success fee, which is a percentage of the compensation awarded.
No Win No Fee agreements can be a good option if you do not have the funds to pay legal fees upfront. An advisor will be able to advise you on whether a No Win No Fee agreement is suitable for your case.
Start Your Claim
In conclusion, if you have been the victim of a GDPR breach, it is important to understand your rights and what compensation you may be entitled to. The GDPR is in place to protect your personal data, and organisations have a legal duty to comply with its requirements.
If you believe that you may have a claim for compensation following a data breach, it is important to seek expert legal advice. Our team of experienced data breach advisors are on hand to assess your case. Furthermore, they can connect you with a data breach solicitor from our panel who can help you pursue your claim.
How Much Compensation For A GDPR Breach Could I Get? Further Guidance
What Is The GDPR And How Does It Impact Data Breach Claims In The UK? – Firstly, you can find out more about the impact of GDPR on data protection in the UK here.
What Are The Key Differences Between A Data Breach Claim And A Personal Injury Claim? – You can learn about different kinds of claims within this guide. Plus, you can find out how they differ.
How Long Do I Have To Make A Data Breach Claim In The UK? – In this guide, you can find out how long you might have to bring a claim.
Information Commissioner’s Office – What Is Personal Data? – This page is from the UK’s Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), which is the independent regulator for data protection in the UK. It explains what personal data is under the GDPR, which is important for organisations to understand when assessing their compliance with the regulation.
GDPR.eu – What is sensitive data under the GDPR? – This page is from the European Commission’s website and provides information on what is considered sensitive data under the GDPR.
Make A Complaint About Data – Finally, the Information Commissioner’s Office provides guidance on reporting data breaches.