Breach of Abuse Data – Could You Claim Compensation?

Have you suffered harm as a result of a breach of abuse data? If so, you may be wondering if you are eligible to claim.

Abuse victim data breach

Breach of abuse data claims guide

The personal data of all UK residents is protected by law through two pieces of legislation called the Data Protection Act 2018 (DPA) and UK General Data Protection Regulation (UK GDPR). This legislation is upheld by the Information Commissioners Office (ICO). The ICO are independent data protection agency.  If organisations fail to comply with data protection legislation, the ICO has the power to investigate and fine them.

In this article, we will discuss how the legislation above protects your personal data, as well as how a No Win No Fee agreement could benefit your claim. To learn more, get in touch:

Select A Section

  1. What Is A Breach Of Abuse Data?
  2. Examples of Abuse Victim Data Breaches
  3. How Could A Breach Of Abuse Data Affect You?
  4. How To Claim For A Breach Of Abuse Data
  5. What Is The Average Data Breach Settlement?
  6. Make Your Claim Now With A No Win No Fee Agreement

What Is A Breach Of Abuse Data?

Personal data breaches can be any security incident that impacts the integrity, confidentiality and availability of your personal data. To class as personal data, the information involved must be able to be used to identify you. For example, your name, phone number, and email address could all be personal data.

Special category data is a kind of personal data that needs extra protection under the DPA and the UK GDPR. This is because of its sensitive nature. Special category data can include things such as your health information, your sexual orientation, and your racial or ethnic origin.

If personal data pertaining to abuse you have suffered has been breached, you may be able to claim. However, not every personal data breach will allow you to claim compensation. This is because the UK GDPR lays out certain criteria that all eligible claims must meet. For example, in order to claim, the breach must cause you to experience harm, it must include your personal data, and it has to be the result of failings on the part of the data controller or processor.

A data controller has control over how and why to use your personal data. A data processor then processes this data by following the controller’s instructions.

To start your claim for a breach of abuse data, get in touch with our team today.

Examples of Abuse Victim Data Breaches

An abuse victim data breach could occur for a number of reasons. However, as we have already mentioned, you could only claim for a breach caused by the failings of a data controller or processor. For example, you may be able to claim for the following instances:

  • Your personal data relating to abuse you have suffered is stored on a device that is stolen or lost, or your files are lost due to the failings of the data controller or processor. This causes you emotional distress.
  • Files that contain your personal data are sent to the wrong email address by an employee in an instance of human error. This causes you to suffer from anxiety.
  • A document that contains your current address is sent to the wrong postal address by an organisation that has not updated its records. This causes you distress, as it could be accessed by an abuser.

To find out if you could have a valid claim for a breach of abuse data, get in touch with our friendly team today.

How Could A Breach Of Abuse Data Affect You

A breach of abuse data can impact you in a number of psychological and financial ways. For example, if a personal data breach compromises data about your abuse, this could have significant psychological consequences.

You may suffer from anxiety after a data breach, stress, or depression. Or, the strain of a personal data breach could exacerbate any pre-existing mental health conditions that you already live with.

If the breach affects your banking details or credit card information, this could lead to significant financial losses. Criminals could make fraudulent charges to your credit card or accrue debt in your name. Or, you may need to take time away from work to recover from the stress of the breach. This could lead to a loss of earnings.

For more information on how to claim if a breach of abuse data has affected you, contact our team today.

How To Claim For A Breach Of Abuse Data

If you have received a data breach notice letter, you may be wondering how to go about claiming. We have compiled a list of some steps you could take before you begin your claim:

  • Firstly, all organisations have a legal duty to report serious breaches that affect the rights and freedoms of data subjects to the ICO no later than 72 hours after discovery. Similarly, impacted data subjects should be informed without delay.
  • Contacting the organisation at fault can help provide more clarity on the breach. They may be able to offer further information, such as how the breach occurred.
  • It is advisable to wait no longer than 3 months after the last meaningful contact with the organisation to make a complaint to the ICO. The ICO may choose to investigate the breach, and any correspondence with them could be used to strengthen your claim.
  • Retain any documents that show an impact on your mental health and finances. This includes GP notes and receipts for directly-related out-of-pocket costs.

You may also want to seek legal advice. Our advisors can provide free and relevant legal advice surrounding your claim for a breach of abuse data when you get in touch today.

What Is The Average Data Breach Settlement?

As every personal data breach claim is unique, and the amount you could receive depends on your individual circumstances, we cannot prove an average data breach settlement. However, we can explain how solicitors value claims and what types of compensation you could receive.

A personal data breach claim can be split into two heads: these are non-material damage, and material damage. Material damage addresses the financial impacts of the breach, such as damage to your credit score or loss of earnings.

Non-material damage addresses the effect the breach has on your mental health. For example, if you suffer from anxiety due to a data breach, or if you wish to claim for depression, these would fall under non-material damage.

While we cannot provide an average settlement, we can provide compensation guidelines used by solicitors when valuing claims. The table below features figures from the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG), a document that helps legal professionals by providing guideline settlement amounts for various illnesses and injuries.

Psychiatric & Psychological Injury Notes Judicial College Guidelines Award Bracket
Psychiatric Harm Notable problems with a negative prognosis and impacting all areas of life including coping with work, relationships and education. (a) Severe Types – £54,830 to £115,730

Psychiatric Harm Similar factors as shown in the bracket above, but with a more optimistic prognosis. (b) Moderately Severe Types – £19,070 to £54,830
Psychiatric Harm Despite similar issues as above, an improvement is seen by the time the case may need to be heard at trial. (c) Moderate Type -£5,860 to £19,070

Psychiatric Harm Award depends on the length of disability and how it affects daily activities such as sleep. (d) Less Severe Type – £1,540 to £5,860

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) Permanent impacts that stop the person from returning to work and functioning at anywhere near the pre-trauma level. (a) Severe Cases – £59,860 to £100,670
PTSD A better prognosis than above and some recovery seen after professional help. (b) Moderately Severe Cases – £23,150 to £59,860

PTSD Overall a large recovery is seen with any remaining issues not being disabling. (c) Moderate Cases – £8,180 to £23,150

PTSD A virtually full recovery experienced within a 24 month period. Only minor issues continuing beyond this time frame (d) Less Severe Cases – £3,950 to £8,180

Please note that this table refers to non-material damage only, and consists of guidelines, not guarantees. For a free consultation of your claim for a breach of abuse data, get in touch with our team today.

Make Your Claim Now With A No Win No Fee Agreement

If you are interested in making a claim, you may be wondering about the benefits of legal representation. Our panel of expert solicitors offer representation under Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA). Generally, with this kind of No Win No Fee arrangement, you receive legal representation without having to pay any upfront fees or ongoing costs.

If your claim succeeds, then your solicitor will take a success fee. This is a legally capped percentage of your compensation award. But, in the case of an unsuccessful claim, they will not take this fee.


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Thank you for reading our guide on making a claim for a breach of abuse data.

Article by EA

Publisher AA