In today’s digital age, personal information is becoming more valuable than ever. Unfortunately, with the increasing use of technology comes the risk of a data breach, which occurs when sensitive or confidential information is accessed or stolen by unauthorised individuals. This can lead to a range of negative consequences, from financial loss and identity theft to reputational damage and emotional distress. If you’re wondering ‘can I get compensation for a data breach?’ this might be because you’ve suffered harm.
In the UK, there are a number of different entities that could potentially breach your data, including businesses, government agencies, and even a hospital. Regardless of who is responsible, if your personal data has been compromised due to wrongdoing by a data controller, you may be entitled to compensation.
This guide will cover all the important information you may need if you are considering making a claim for compensation following a data breach. We’ll start by explaining the eligibility criteria for claiming, and then move on to what you could claim for in data breach compensation. We’ll also provide details on how an advisor from our helpline could check your case and connect you with a No Win No Fee data breach solicitor from our panel should you be eligible to claim.
So whether you’re a victim of a recent data breach or simply want to be prepared in case the worst happens, this guide will provide you with everything you need to know about getting the compensation you deserve. If you have questions about making a claim, or would like to get started, you can reach us:
Can I Get Compensation For A Data Breach – Eligibility Criteria
If you’ve suffered as a result of a data breach, you may be entitled to compensation. However, it’s important to understand the eligibility criteria for claiming. In the UK, the Data Protection Act 2018, which enshrines in law the UK GDPR, provides legislation that requires data controllers to protect personal data from being wrongfully exposed.
Personal data is any information that can be used to identify an individual, such as their name, address, email address, or bank details, for example. A breach of personal data can be harmful in a number of ways. It can lead to financial loss, identity theft, reputational damage, and emotional distress. Data controllers must take adequate measures to protect personal data and prevent data breaches from occurring.
To be eligible for compensation for a data breach, you would need to show that a breach of personal data occurred and that you suffered harm as a result. This could include financial loss, such as unauthorised charges on your bank account, or non-financial harm, such as emotional distress.
You would also need to show that the data controller was responsible for the breach, either by wrongfully failing to take adequate measures to protect personal data or by wrongfully allowing unauthorised access to personal data. Finally, you would need to show that the breach was reasonably foreseeable and that the data controller had a duty of care to prevent it from occurring.
If you meet these eligibility criteria, you may be able to claim compensation for a data breach. Our helpline advisors can help assess your case and connect you with a No Win No Fee data breach solicitor from our panel who can help you make a claim.
Can I Get Compensation For A Data Breach At Any Time?
In the UK, the limitation period for making a claim for a data breach is typically six years. This means that you have up to six years from the date of the breach to make a claim for compensation as a maximum. However, it’s important to act quickly, as it may be more difficult to prove that a breach occurred and that you suffered harm the longer you wait. Additionally, if you’re considering making a claim, it’s recommended that you seek legal advice as soon as possible to ensure that you fully understand your time limits, as some claims have a shorter limitation period than this.
How Could A Data Breach Happen?
A data breach can happen in a variety of ways, and it can occur in any organisation that collects and stores personal data. For example, a hospital could suffer a data breach if unauthorised individuals access patient records. A credit card company could suffer a breach if hackers steal customer account details. An educational establishment could suffer a breach if unauthorised individuals access student records.
The effects of a data breach can be wide-ranging and severe. For example, in the case of a hospital, a data breach could lead to patients’ medical histories and other sensitive information being exposed. This could result in identity theft, reputational damage, and emotional distress for the affected patients. In the case of a credit card company, a data breach could lead to customers’ financial information being stolen, which could result in unauthorised transactions and financial loss. In the case of an educational establishment, a data breach could lead to students’ personal information and academic records being exposed. This could result in reputational damage for the establishment and emotional distress for the affected students.
What Damages Could I Claim For In A Data Breach Claim?
If you’ve suffered harm as a result of a data breach, you may be able to claim compensation for a range of damages. These could include financial losses, such as unauthorised charges or identity theft, as well as non-financial losses, such as emotional distress and reputational damage.
Specifically, you may be able to claim for the following damages:
- Financial losses incurred as a result of the breach
- Cost of credit monitoring or identity theft protection
- Damage to reputation or embarrassment
- Anxiety, stress, or emotional distress caused by the breach
To determine the types of damages you may be able to claim for, it’s important to seek legal advice. An advisor from our helpline can help you understand your rights and connect you with a No Win No Fee data breach solicitor from our panel who can help you make a claim for compensation.
Can I Get Compensation For A Data Breach If I’ve Only Suffered Emotional Harm?
Yes, you may be able to get compensation even if you’ve only suffered distress after a data breach. In fact, emotional harm is a common type of harm suffered by individuals following a data breach. Examples of emotional harm that could entitle you to compensation include anxiety, stress, and depression caused by the breach.
It’s important to note that proving emotional harm can be more difficult than proving financial harm, such as lost funds or unauthorised charges. However, it’s still possible to claim compensation for emotional harm if you can demonstrate that the breach caused you to suffer psychological injury.
To do this, you may need to provide evidence such as medical reports or testimony from a mental health professional. It’s also important to document any symptoms you experience, such as sleeplessness, loss of appetite, or increased anxiety, as this can help support your claim for compensation.