This guide will explore the eligibility criteria you must meet in order to make a website data breach claim. It will also discuss the steps you can take after a data breach, the evidence you could gather to support your claim, and the potential compensation payout you could be awarded if your claim succeeds.
The Data Protection Act 2018 (DPA) and UK General Data Protection Regulation (UK GDPR) work together as data protection laws to protect the personal data of those who reside in the UK. It sets out the responsibilities a data controller and data processor have.
A data controller decides on why and how your personal data will be processed and they can process it themselves. A data processor acts on behalf of the controller. Each must adhere to the laws that are in place to protect personal data. If they fail to do so, this is a breach of data protection legislation.
The Information Commissioners Office (ICO) can investigate any breaches and take enforcement action against organisations that have failed to uphold their responsibilities.
To learn more about seeking data breach compensation, read on. Alternatively, you can get in touch with our advisors for free legal advice. To reach them, you can:
Choose A Section
- A Guide To Claiming For A Website Data Breach
- What Is A Website Data Breach And When Are You Eligible To Claim?
- What Could My Potential Compensation From A Data Breach Claim Be?
- Evidence That Could Help You Receive A Data Breach Payout
- Why Claim For A Data Breach On A No Win No Fee Basis?
- Learn More About Claiming For A Website Data Breach
A personal data breach can involve a security incident that leads to the integrity, confidentiality, and availability of your personal data being affected.
Personal data is any information that can be used to identify you as a living person. It can include:
- Your name
- Postal address
- Email address
- Phone number
- Debit and credit card details
Additionally, there is another type of personal data that requires extra protection. This is known as special category data and is considered more sensitive in nature. It can include information relating to your:
- Health, such as information about any medical conditions you have
- Racial or ethnic origin
- Sexual orientation
- Trade union membership
If your personal data is affected due to a website data breach, you may be able to claim compensation. Call to find out more.
There are different ways this data could be affected in a website data breach. For example:
- Human error: Information, such as your name and email address, could be published on a website when there was no lawful basis to do so allowing unauthorised parties to gain access to your personal data.
- Cyber security incident: There could be a failure to encrypt information on the website allowing cyber hackers easier access to sensitive information.
In some instances, you may be able to seek compensation after a data breach compromised your personal information. However, certain eligibility criteria must be met. You must show:
- A data controller or processor failed to adhere to data protection law
- As a result of their failings, your personal data was compromised in a breach
- This caused you financial loss or emotional harm.
Call our team to find out whether you’re eligible to seek data breach compensation.
As part of the settlement you receive after making a successful website data breach claim, you could be awarded compensation for material damage and non-material damage.
Material damage relates to the financial loss you have experienced due to the personal data breach. This can include money stolen from your account or loans taken out in your name. It can also include the ongoing financial impact of having your credit score affected. Evidence can help you prove these losses, such as bank statements.
Non-material damage relates to the psychological harm you experienced due to the personal data breach. This can include stress, anxiety, distress, and post-traumatic stress disorder.
In order to calculate how much compensation you’re owed for non-material damage, solicitors can use the Judicial College Guidelines. This document contains a list of different types of harm with corresponding compensation brackets.
We have included figures from the guidelines in the table below. You can use this table as an alternative to a data breach compensation calculator. Please only use them as a guide though because your actual settlement could differ.
|Type of Harm||Guideline Compensation Brackets||Description|
|General Mental Injury||Severe £54,830 - £115,730||The person experiences several issues with different areas of their life and has a very poor prognosis.|
|General Mental Injury||Moderately Severe £19,070 - £54,830||Significant issues similar to above but with a better prognosis.|
|General Mental Injury||Moderate £5,860 - £19,070||Improvement of issues experienced and a good prognosis.|
|General Mental Injury||Less Severe £1,540 - £5,860||The duration of impact and how badly the person was affected is considered.|
|Anxiety Disorder||Severe £59,860 - £100,670||All aspects of the person's life are impacted negatively.|
|Anxiety Disorder||Moderately Severe £23,150 - £59,860||The prognosis is better than in the bracket above because of the person receiving professional help.|
£8,180 - £23,150
|A significant recovery and any issues that persist won't be majorly disabling.|
|Anxiety Disorder||Less Severe £3,950 -£8,180||Almost a full recovery within a 2 year period.|
If you would like a free valuation of your claim, please get in touch with our team of advisors. They can provide an estimate of how much you could receive following a successful claim.
There are several steps you can take before making a website data breach claim. These include:
- Contacting the organisation about the breach of your personal information. Any correspondence you have with them can be used as evidence to support your potential claim.
- Reporting your concerns to the ICO. You can do this if you have not had an adequate response or any response from the organisation. The ICO may choose to investigate your concerns. If they do, you can use the findings from their investigation as evidence.
- Collect evidence of any financial losses, such as credit or debit card statements and credit score information.
It’s important to note that the organisation must notify you of the breach without undue delay. They must also notify the ICO within 72 hours of the breach. In both instances, this is only applicable if the breach has affected your rights and freedoms.
You should also be aware of the time limit for starting a data breach claim. This is typically 6 years. In cases where you are claiming against a public body, this will be reduced to 1 year.
If you are unsure of the different stages of the claims process, you could seek legal advice. Our advisors can provide free legal advice regarding your potential claim and could assess whether you’re eligible to have a solicitor from our panel represent your claim.
Find out more about the services they can offer by calling our team on the number above. Alternatively, you can continue reading to find out how they can offer their services to mitigate the financial risk for you.
A No Win No Fee solicitor from our panel could offer their services under a Conditional Fee Agreement. This is a particular type of No Win No Fee arrangement that can typically allow you access to your solicitor’s services without paying for them upfront, while the claim proceeds, or if the claim is not a success.
If your claim is a success, a success fee will be paid to your solicitor from your compensation. However, the law caps this amount.
To learn more about how an arrangement like this could work for you, please get in touch using the contact details we have provided below.
Contact Us For Free Legal Advice – See If You Can Claim
We hope this guide on making a website data breach claim has helped. However, if you still have any questions regarding your rights to seek compensation, please get in touch with our team. To reach them, you can:
For more of our guides:
- Mortgage broker data breach claims
- Claiming compensation after a police data breach
- Can I claim for a private company data breach?
For more external resources:
- ICO – Data security incident trends
- ICO – Action taken
- National Cyber Security Centre – Guidance for individuals and families
Thank you for reading this guide on claiming after a website data breach. If you need any other information, call on the number above.
Writer Jeff Wilders
Editor Meg Moon