What Are Your Rights After A Wrong Fax Data Breach?

Has your personal data been compromised in a wrong fax data breach? Did you suffer harm as a result of the breach? A personal data breach can have significant effects on your mental and financial wellbeing. If you have suffered harm as a result of a breach, you may be eligible to claim.

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Wrong fax data breaches claims guide

In this article, we will explain what a wrong fax data breach is and how it can happen, along with a brief explanation of data protection laws in the UK. We will also elaborate on how much compensation you may receive for your claim as well as how our No Win No Fee solicitors can help.

If you intend to pursue compensation, our advisors can tell you if you have a valid claim. Furthermore, if they find your case is valid, they may connect you with one of our personal data breach solicitors to help you start your claim. Contact our advisors today by:

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  1. Is Sending A Fax To The Wrong Person A Data Breach?
  2. Why Do Wrong Fax Data Breaches Happen?
  3. London NHS Trust Data Breach
  4. Examples Of Wrong Fax Data Breach Claims
  5. Calculating Compensation For A Wrong Fax Data Breach
  6. No Win No Fee Wrong Fax Data Breach Claims

Is Sending A Fax To The Wrong Person A Data Breach?

A number of industries and sectors use fax machines to transfer information and personal data. Organisations that use your personal data are known as data controllers and they can either do their own processing or outsource it to a data processor. As such, they both must comply with and implement data security laws. 

The UK General Data Protection Regulation 2016 (UK GDPR) defines a personal data breach as a security incident that compromises your personal data, which is any data that could be used to identify you. Personal data breaches can mean your personal information is unlawfully or accidentally disclosed, lost, altered, accessed, or destroyed.

The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) is a non-departmental public body that upholds the rights of data subjects and enforces data protection laws. In order for a data controller to process your personal data they must have a lawful basis, there are 6 lawful bases for data processing.

The entities responsible for your data are known as:

  • Data controllers – The original collector of your information that decides why and how your data is processed.
  • Data processors – A separate entity hired by a controller to process data on their behalf.

If a data controller or processor fails to safeguard your personal data, causing you harm, you may be able to claim compensation. To find out if you have a valid wrong fax data breach claim, contact our advisors today.

How Common Are Different Types Of Data Breaches?

Per the ICO’s data security incident trends show that 2,172 data security incidents have been reported to them for the fourth financial quarter of 2021/22. Data posted or faxed to the wrong recipient accounted for 217 of these incidents. 

The graph below shows the statistics for data posted or faxed to the wrong recipient by sector in Q4 of the fiscal year 2021/22:

Why Do Wrong Fax Data Breaches Happen?

The UK GDPR and the Data Protection Act 2018 (DPA) are the two main pieces of data protection legislation in the UK. When organisations fail to handle personal data in a way that complies with data protection law, this can result in a wrong fax data breach. 

However, it is important to remember that you cannot make a claim anytime an organisation fails to comply with data breach law. To make a personal data breach claim, there are three main criteria.

  • The breach must compromise your personal data: for example, a GP surgery may fax your patient records to another surgery, but mistakenly send them to the wrong machine.
  • The breach must be a result of wrongful conduct: Wrongful conduct means a failure to safeguard your data correctly. For example, a failure to comply with the 7 Core Principles of the UK GDPR.
  • You must suffer harm as a result of the breach: This could include emotional harm, such as anxiety or stress. Or, it could include financial harm, such as damage to your credit score or unlawful access to your bank account.

Contact our advisors for more information on the process of a wrong fax data breach claim. They can provide free legal advice and may be able to connect you with one of our solicitors.

London NHS Trust Data Breach

The Central London Community Healthcare (CLCH) an NHS Trust was fined £90,000 after the details of 59 patients were faxed to the wrong person. The personal information included special category data such as patient diagnoses. 

The ICO penalised the trust as the security incident was extensive, with 45 faxes containing personal data sent over a three-month period to a member of the public. 

(Source: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-london-18145350) 

Our advisors can help you start your personal data breach claim today. Contact us using the details at the bottom of the page to find out more.

Examples Of Wrong Fax Data Breach Claims

Not all cases of a fax going to the wrong recipient will result in a successful wrong fax data breach claim. As we mentioned earlier, you must be able to prove that the breach occurred as a result of wrongful conduct to make a valid claim, as well as that you suffered harm.

Some examples of how wrongful conduct could result in a personal data breach include:

  • Failure to redact: If documents containing personal data aren’t properly redacted, but uploaded to the internet this could result in a personal data breach.
  • Human error: Fax machines operate using numbers to identify each other. If an employee mistakenly uses the wrong number, this could result in a personal data breach.
  • Out-of-date records: Organisations must keep their records accurate and up to date. This is part of the 7 key principles of data protection. If they fail to update their records, this could result in faxing personal data to the wrong person or location.

If you believe you have been subject to a wrong fax data breach, contact our advisors today. They can provide free legal advice and more help surrounding your claim.

Calculating Compensation For A Wrong Fax Data Breach

A successful wrong fax data breach claim has two heads of compensation you can pursue separately or together:

  • Material damages – Financial damages to compensate for the results of fraud, credit card theft, and identity impersonation. 
  • Non-material damages – Compensation for the mental impacts of your breach, such as anxiety, depression, paranoia, stress, and other psychological injuries. Since the ruling of Vidal-Hall and Others v Google Inc [2015], you may now claim for non-material damages without claiming for material damages alongside it.

The 16th edition of the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG) outlines the guideline amounts for non-material damages. The amount you could receive differs depending on the mental health injury and how serious it is, as shown in the table below:

InjuryCompensationNotes
Severe general mental health injury (a)£54,830 to £115,730The injured person will have severe problems with everyday life activities, work, and relationships.
Moderately severe general mental health injury (b)£19,070 to £54,830Significant problems still exist with the above factors, however, the individual has slightly improved.
Moderate general mental health injury (c)£5,860 to £19,070The prognosis will be better in regards to the factors mentioned above, due to a marked improvement of symptoms by the time of trial.
Less severe general mental health injury (d)£1,540 to £5,860The award will consider the extent of the disability and its impact on daily life activities.
Severe post-trauma anxiety disorder (a)£59,860 to £100,670Little to no function at the pre-trauma level.
Moderately severe post-trauma anxiety disorder (b)£23,150 to £59,860Professional help has aided in the individual's recovery, considerably improving the prognosis, however, residual effects are likely to cause disabilities.
Moderate post-trauma anxiety disorder (c)£8,180 to £23,150Where the person's injuries have majorly recovered and any lasting disabilities are not significantly impairing.
Less severe post-trauma anxiety disorder (d)£3,950 to £8,180Full recovery within a two-year time period, with very minor continuing symptoms.

If you have any questions about data breach compensation amounts, are advisors are free to help. Contact our team today for a free estimate of what your claim could be worth.

No Win No Fee Wrong Fax Data Breach Claims

Our advisors and solicitors are well-versed in many parts of the law, from personal injury and medical negligence to data breaches. Should you want to make a wrong fax data breach claim, you may find it beneficial to reach out to our advisors. They can help you understand if your claim is valid and may pass you on to our No Win No Fee solicitors. 

Our solicitors offer a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA), which is a type of No Win No Fee agreement. This allows you to access legal representation without upfront costs. This is because there are no upfront or ongoing fees to pay under a CFA. If your claim succeeds, you will pay a small success fee. However, if it fails, there is no success fee to pay.

To find out how one of our personal data breach solicitors could help you, contact us today by:

Wrong Fax Data Breach Claims Resources 

For more articles related to wrong fax data breach claims, we recommend: 

Or, you can find more information through the links below:

  • The NHS offers multiple stress and mental health services.
  • Check if you’re entitled to Statutory Sick Pay
  • The ICO outlines the 72 hours breach reporting process.

Contact our advisors today for more information about your wrong fax data breach claim.