Breach Of Criminal Offence Data – Can You Claim Compensation?

Breach Of Criminal Offence Data - Can You Claim Compensation?

Breach Of Criminal Offence Data – Can You Claim Compensation?

Has your criminal offence data been compromised? Criminal offence data, like personal information, is subject to the same data protection legislation in the UK. The party in charge of your data should adhere to the law and take all the necessary steps for data safety. If your personal data is compromised, exposing your criminal offence data, then on the grounds you can prove that not enough was done to protect your information, you could claim compensation for any harm that you have suffered. 

In this guide, we will explain what is criminal offence data, are criminal records part of your personal data and how a breach could happen. Additionally, we will explore whether you can access your own criminal data as well as how much compensation you may receive for a breach. Finally, we will elaborate on how we could help your case by introducing you to our panel of expert lawyers. 

Contact our advisors today if you want free legal advice on your case. They can assess the validity of your claim and may possibly forward you to our panel of professional lawyers who can help start the claiming process. Reach out to advisors today by:

Select A Section

  1. What Is Criminal Offence Data?
  2. Are Criminal Records Classed As Personal Data?
  3. Who Could Have Breached Your Criminal Offence Data?
  4. Can I Access My Criminal Offence Data?
  5. What Could You Claim For A Breach Of Criminal Offence Data?
  6. Contact Us To Start A No Win No Fee Claim

What Is Criminal Offence Data?

The UK General Data Protection Regulation (UK GDPR) and the Data Protection Act 2018 (DPA) work together to establish robust data protection laws. 

A personal data breach is a security incident compromising your personal information’s confidentiality, availability or integrity. Your data can be compromised via unauthorised disclosure, destruction, loss, access or alteration, either accidentally or deliberately. Data protection laws seek to keep secure personal data, and it cannot be processed without a lawful basis

Under UK GDPR, both of these entities can be held responsible for a personal data breach if they failed to adhere to data protection laws:

  • Data controllers – The collector of your information that outlines the intended purpose for your data.
  • Data processors – A separate entity hired by the controller to process your data on behalf of the controller.

Are Criminal Records Classed As Personal Data?

The UK GDPR defines personal data as any information that can identify an individual. The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), the independent public body for upholding data protection laws, has coined the term criminal offence data. It refers to personal data that relates to criminal convictions and offences or related security measures. The UK GDPR gives extra protection around this information. Some examples of criminal offence data include:

  • Criminal activity
  • Allegations, including ones that are unproven
  • Investigations
  • Proceedings
  • Absence of convictions

This data has more stringent protection in the UK GDPR under Recital 75, as the information poses risks to an individual’s freedom and rights. Breaching criminal records can possibly impact a person’s privacy, liberty, security, employment, right to a fair trial and the ability to conduct business.

You can only process criminal offence data if:

  • You have official authority and process the data in an official capacity.
  • You identify a condition for processing in Schedule 1 of the DPA 2018.

Contact our advisors today for more information on your criminal offence data breach claim. 

Who Could Have Breached Your Criminal Offence Data?

There is a litany of organisations that can be data controllers and processors. The parties that could process or handle this type of data include:

  • The police – The police use two systems for criminal records; the Police National Computer (PNC) and the Police National Database (PND).
  • Employers – When hiring for a position, employers will often conduct disclosure and barring service (DBS) checks.
  • Solicitors – Very often, people will use the services of a legal representative in criminal cases.

Can I Access My Criminal Offence Data?

Section 45 of the DPA outlines that a data subject has the right to access personal data held about them. This is known as a Subject Access Request (SAR). 

You can make a subject access request to the ACRO Criminal Records Office (ACRO). They store information from police forces in England, Wales, Northern Ireland, Jersey and the Isle of Man and the British Transport Police. However, for Scotland, the process is different.

When requesting your information, you should include in your request:

  • Name and contact details
  • Identifiable information such as an account number
  • Details or relevant dates that relate to the data that you want

What Could You Claim For A Breach Of Criminal Offence Data?

In a successful criminal offence data breach claim, you could receive compensation for your damages, including: 

  • Material damage – Financial damages including loss of money, theft, credit card fraud, identity impersonation and fraudulent loan applications.
  • Non-material damage – Mental health injuries sustained as a result of the breach. The individual may develop anxiety, stress, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression and paranoia, amongst other psychological problems.

The 16th edition of the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG) 2022 outlines potential payout bracket figures for your non-material damage. The amount your receive changes in line with the sort of injury sustained and how serious it is. Please see the below table for potential settlement brackets for mental health injuries:

Injury Compensation Notes
Severe general psychiatric injury (a) £54,830 to £115,730 The individual will have severe problems with daily activities, relationships, and vulnerabilities. The amount will take into consideration the medical treatments and their successes as well as prognosis.
Moderately severe general psychiatric injury (b) £19,070 to £54,830 A more optimistic prognosis, but with significant problems with the above factors.
Moderate general psychiatric injury (c) £5,860 to £19,070 Marked prognosis improvements, however, problems still exist.
Less severe general psychiatric injury (d) £1,540 to £5,860 The award considers disabilities and their effects on daily life and sleep.
Severe anxiety trauma disorder (a) £59,860 to £100,670 The person will be unable to return to the state before the trauma occurred.
Moderately severe anxiety trauma disorder (b) £23,150 to £59,860 A better prognosis from above due to professional help; however, future disabilities will remain.
Moderate anxiety trauma disorder (c) £8,180 to £23,150 Where there is a major recovery with minor symptoms that are not overtly disabling.
Less severe anxiety trauma disorder (d) £3,950 to £8,180 Within one to two years, a recovery will be made with only minor symptoms persisting.

In 2015, the Vidal-Hall and Others v Google case changed the way compensation is claimed in a data breach case. The Court of Appeals decided that an individual could receive non-material damage without providing evidence for financial losses.

Contact our advisors for information about criminal offence data breach compensation claims today.  

Contact Us To Start A No Win No Fee Claim

Should you intend to start your claim, we suggest contacting our advisors, who can answer your questions and understand your claim’s legitimacy. If they find your case has a strong foundation, they may put you in touch with our panel of expert No Win No Fee solicitors.

Our panel of solicitors provide their legal services through a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA). This arrangement is an affordable option as it requires no upfront hiring costs, and you do not pay your lawyer’s fees if your claim ultimately fails. 

A CFA lawyer receives a success fee when your claim succeeds. It is a small percentage of your compensation.

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Related Guides

Please see our other data breach articles:

My Data Has Been Breached; What Can I Do?

Can I Claim For A Solicitors Data Protection Breach?

Examples Of Data Protection Breach Cases You Could Claim For

Or check out the informative external links we have collated:

ICO – Your data matters

NHS – Anxiety

ICO – 72 hours 

Talk to our advisors today if you have any questions about criminal offence data breach claims.