People are still unsure about their rights to compensation as a victim of a data leak. It’s an emerging problem as the continuation of the digital age means more and more of our information can so easily be mishandled.
One wrong click of a button; a single mistype; a slip by staff clicking on a rogue email link – they can all lead to huge amounts of data being inadvertently put in the hands of people it shouldn’t have.
So, the aim of this blog is to give you a little bit of an insight – in brief – about your rights to claim.
Who’s who in the control of data?
We have commonly two main parties in the handling of your data:
- You – as the person whose data is being handled;
- The Data Controller – the person(s) responsible for processing or handling personal data.
A Data Controller can be any organisation, or any person within an organisation, who is handling data. It is the Data Controller(s) who is/are responsible for ensuring that they adhere to the Data Protection Act 1998 that governs the protection of personal data for any “identifiable living” person.
Data Controller’s responsibility
In terms of the responsibilities to protect your data, it is all about making sure that your rights to privacy in terms of your data should never be breached. Specific permission must be obtained from you to provide your data to someone else outside of a Data Controller’s control.
Therefore, if your data is given to anyone else without your express permission, the Data Controller may be in breach of the Data protection Act.
Your Rights to Claim
If your personal data has been made available to someone else either by way of a leak or without your express permission, you may be entitled to claim compensation for distress that has been caused.
If distress has been caused as a result of your personal data falling in to the wrong hands then you could be entitled to compensation. There are of course links between the nature of the information that has been disclosed and who it has been disclosed to, but in any event, any distress caused can lead to compensation.
IMPORTANT: advice on this page is intended to be up-to-date for the 'first published date'.
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