High-profile breaches which make regular headline news, coupled with the ease with which claims can now be pursued have moved privacy up the agenda for many businesses. The regulatory landscape changes at pace and claimant firms are increasingly prepared to act on a no-win, no-fee basis, often backed by after the event (“ATE”) insurance (the premiums for which they will seek to recover from defendants).
What might start with a complaint to the Information Commissioner’s Office (“ICO”) or unfavourable press coverage may develop into a longer and more expensive experience for any business in the wake of a serious incident. Furthermore, the Court of Appeal’s decision in the representative action of Lloyd v Google has, for the time being (it has just been considered by the Supreme Court) established that damages can be awarded for a breach of data protection legislation leading to a loss of control of personal data without any proof of distress or material damage.
Many incidents are the result of human error, such as an email or letter sent to the wrong email address or with the wrong attachment. This makes for a happy hunting ground for claimant lawyers who, together with claims management companies and litigation funders, are likely to be the main winners. Liability can be difficult, if not impossible, to defend and the prospect of dealing with what appears to be a complex high value claim and incurring substantial costs can mean that many potential defendants simply pay up even if they have a potential defence. As a result UK businesses of all sizes face a growing number of low-value but disproportionately expensive data breach claims for the foreseeable future.
BLM’s Data Breach Unit provides the essential support to those businesses facing claims resulting from:
- the accidental loss of data,
- unintentional misuse of data,
- unauthorised or misdirected e-communications, correspondence and direct marketing.
We also support organisations experiencing more significant incidents involving the theft of data and cyber-attacks, including ransomware or major incidents involving the accidental loss of data.
Download our Data Breach Unit flyer for more information.
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