Claiming For A Data Breach Caused By Human Error

Welcome to our guide on human error data breach claims. Data breach law can seem confusing, and if you’ve been harmed by a breach, you might be unsure if you could make a personal data breach claim. In this guide, we’ll explain the leading laws for data protection: the UK General Data Protection Regulation (UK GDPR) and the Data Protection Act 2018 (DPA). Explaining how they work together to protect your personal information and provide you, the data subject, with the right to seek compensation when said data is breached, and this leads to you suffering harm.

For those who don’t have a background in data protection law, it can be hard to know when you are entitled to make a data breach compensation claim. We’ll explain when you could be eligible for data breach compensation, and define some important terminology. 

One of the most common questions regarding data breach claims is, “How much compensation could I receive?” Data protection breach compensation will address two areas of damage: harm caused to your mental health and reimbursement for financial losses.

Finally, our guide explores the many benefits of working with a solicitor on your data breach claim. We work with a panel of expert solicitors with years of experience in personal data breach law, who are waiting to help you.

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We hope that our guide will answer any questions you might have. However, if you’d like more information, or if you’re ready to get started, contact one of our advisors today. They can offer you a free consultation when you get in touch by:

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Browse Our Guide

  1. What Is A Human Error Data Breach?
  2. How Do You Find Out If You Can Make A Data Breach Claim?
  3. What Can Lead To Human Error Data Breach Claims?
  4. How Much Compensation For A Human Error Data Breach?
  5. Can I Make A Human Error Data Breach Claim On A No Win No Fee Basis?
  6. Read More About Human Error Data Breach Claims

What Is A Human Error Data Breach?

Before we can explain what a human error data breach is, we’ll first talk about the basics of data protection law. If you are a UK resident, then any information that can be used to identify you is protected under the UK GDPR and the Data Protection Act. This kind of information is also known as personal data.

The parties that handle this data are known as data controllers and data processors. The controller is responsible for deciding how and why they use your data. They can either decide to process it internally or outsource it to a data processor.

According to the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), the independent UK watchdog for the protection of data rights, a personal data breach can be defined as a security incident that compromises the availability, integrity, or confidentiality of your data.

A human error data breach is a breach caused by a person making a mistake. For example, if an administrative assistant puts the wrong address on a postal letter, sending your personal data to the wrong person, this could be an example of a human error data breach.

Read on to find out when you could make a data breach claim. Or, contact one of our friendly advisors today to get started.

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How Do You Find Out If You Can Make A Data Breach Claim? 

So, when could you make a claim? If you want to claim compensation for a human error data breach, you need to be able to prove that:

  • An organisation, i.e. the data controller or processor, did not adhere to data protection laws. For example, a data controller may have failed to train their staff on data awareness.
  • This caused a data breach that affected your personal data. For example, due to the lack of training, a staff member disclosed your personal data to a person who had no authorisation to know it.
  • You suffered mentally or financially as a result of your information being breached.

Wrongful conduct occurs when an organisation fails to comply with data protection laws. In terms of human error, wrongful conduct could look like personal data being stored on a device without a password or other security measures, allowing this data to be accessed when the device is lost or stolen.

If you’d like to find out if you could claim compensation for a personal data breach, get in touch with a member of our team. They can evaluate your potential data protection compensation claim through a free evaluation, and tell you whether or not you could be owed compensation.

What Can Help You Claim Data Breach Compensation?

There are a number of steps you can take that could help you with your claim, but the most important is gathering evidence. The right evidence should be able to prove:

  • Who is responsible for the breach
  • How it occurred
  • How your personal data was affected
  • How severely you were harmed

This kind of evidence could include:

  • A letter of notification from the organisation
  • Medical records illustrating your psychological damage
  • Bank statements showing financial losses
  • The results of an ICO investigation after you report the breach

To learn more about supporting human error data breach claims, get in touch with our team of advisors today.

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What Can Lead To Human Error Data Breach Claims? 

Human error data breaches can occur in a number of ways, including:

Statistics Related To Personal Data Breaches

The ICO provide statistics for data security incidents that have been reported to them. In the year 2023, 1,745 instances of data being emailed to the wrong address were reported, making up 16% of all breaches. 6% of reported breaches were attributed to personal data being posted or faxed to the wrong recipient, with 690 reported incidents.

These are both examples of human error data breaches, and show us that these kinds of security incidents aren’t isolated or uncommon. If you’d like to find out if you could make a claim, contact our team.

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How Much Compensation For A Human Error Data Breach?

There are two kinds of compensation that you could claim after a personal data breach. The first kind is non-material damage compensation, which covers the mental effects of the breach. For example, if it caused you to suffer from depression, stress, or anxiety.

When this head of claim is valued, the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG) can be used to help. The JCG lists mental health injuries alongside guideline compensation amounts. See the table below for examples, but please note that the first entry is not taken from the JCG.

Guideline Compensation Amounts

Psycholgical InjuryGuidelines
Severe Mental Harm And Material DamageUp to £250,000+
Severe Psychological Damage£66,920 to £141,240
Moderately Severe Psychological Damage£23,270 to £66,920
Moderate Psychological Damage£7,150 to £23,270
Less Severe Psychological Damage£1,880 to £7,150
Severe Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)£73,050 to £122,850
Moderately Severe Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)£28,250 to £73,050
Moderate Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)£9,980 to £28,250
Less Severe Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)£4,820 to £9,980

You might also be eligible for material damage compensation. This addresses the financial losses caused by the breach. For example, if you lost out on wages because the psychological effects of the breach meant you could no longer work, material damage compensation could help you recoup these losses.

Contact our team to get more information on compensation in data breach claims, or keep reading to find out how a solicitor could help you.

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Can I Make A Human Error Data Breach Claim On A No Win No Fee Basis?

Making a personal data breach claim might seem daunting. However, while you aren’t obligated to work with a solicitor, it can make the process feel less stressful. This is because solicitors work and train for years before they qualify, and can use these years of experience to guide you through the data breach compensation claims process.

bb A solicitor from our panel could help you in a number of ways. For example, they could arrange for an independent medical expert to examine your psychological injuries and write a report to be used as evidence. They can also help you decode the legal jargon that comes with making a claim, communicate with the defendant and, finally, negotiate a settlement.

Our panel works on a No Win No Fee basis and offers their clients a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA). Under this kind of arrangement, you don’t need to pay an upfront fee for their work, and you won’t pay for their services if the claim fails. If you make a successful claim, your solicitor will take a small percentage of your compensation as their success fee.

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If you’d like to find out if a solicitor from our panel could help you, contact our team today by:

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