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Data leaks and exposed identity documents
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data breaches and stolen passport

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Data leaks and exposed identity documents

When a data leak occurs, affected victims often worry about the financial details that may have been accessed, fearing that criminals may use their bank or card details to commit theft or fraud. However, it is vital that we do not forget the damage that can be done with exposed identity documents as well.

With identity details, criminals are given tools with which to gain further access to your life and your private information. You could be put in an incredibly risky situation when a third party leaks your data. Organisations have a duty to protect your personal information and should always be held accountable if they fail to prevent its exposure.

At Your Lawyers – the Data Leak Lawyers – we have been handling these kinds of data leak cases for years, and are here to advise anyone who has had their identity documents exposed.

What can criminals do with exposed identity documents?

Passports, driving licenses and National Insurance numbers can be added to the list of highly sensitive personal information, alongside the typical bank and card details, that can present financial risks. With these exposed identity documents, the risk can be underestimated, as people may assume that a criminal needs to have stolen your passport physically in order to do any real damage.

Unfortunately, this is not always the case. Alongside other details, such as your name or date of birth, a passport number alone could represent a significant addition to a criminal’s profile of your identity.

In fact, there is a whole network of fraudsters and cybercriminals on the dark web who aggregate personal details to build identity profiles of victims. Alone, a passport number may not be of much use to a criminal, but it could be sold on to someone who can it turn it to their advantage, or it could be used to make a forgery look more authentic.

Travel company breaches

We have represented clients in a number of travel company breaches over the years, some of which have involved exposed identity documents. In the Marriott data breach of 2018, it was revealed that the data of approximately 500 million customers had been exposed since 2014, including up to five million passport numbers. Alongside names, birth dates and addresses, criminals with access to the exposed data could build quite a clear picture of the affected customers.

In the British Airways data breach, the airline was quick to confirm that passport information had not be affected by the breach, but Card Verification Value (CVV) codes had been exposed. It is added details like this that can add to the authenticity of a criminal’s identity fraud and theft efforts, even when they are not in possession of exposed identity documents.

Claiming for data exposure with The Data Leak Lawyers

At Your Lawyers – The Data Leak Lawyers – we have represented many clients who have suffered identity theft and fraud following a leak of their identity documents or other data.

Unfortunately, it can be much harder to identify the misuse of exposed identity documents compared to bank and card details, and it is worrying to think that hackers may be using your data without your knowledge.

We are here to help anyone through the stress and anxiety of a data breach, pursuing their rightful claim for compensation. We can offer free, no-obligation advice to anyone who has had their data exposed by a third party, so do not hesitate to contact us to discuss your potential claim.

The content of this post/page was considered accurate at the time of the original posting and/or at the time of any posted revision. The content of this page may, therefore, be out of date. The information contained within this page does not constitute legal advice. Any reliance you place on the information contained within this page is done so at your own risk.

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