Throughout this guide, we shall examine whether those that suffer because of a data breach by text message can make a personal data breach claim.
In this modern day and age, organisations use multiple digital platforms to communicate internally and externally. These can include instant messaging services like text messages, email or social media platforms. So, employers must train their employees to handle data responsibly when using these platforms.
You may be eligible to claim compensation for the harm caused by an organisation that breaches your personal data via text message because it failed to comply with data protection laws.
Please contact us today to see if you are eligible to claim. We can assign a No Win No Fee solicitor from our panel to work on your case on the basis it has good solid grounds. They will work hard to win you the compensation you deserve.
Please get in contact with us today:
- Call our helpline on 0161 696 9685
- Contact us by completing our online claims form
- Or seek claims advice using our Live Support widget
Select A Section
- What Is A Text Message Data Breach?
- Are Text Messages Considered Data?
- What Data Could A Text Message Contain?
- How Could A Text Message Data Breach Occur?
- Text Message Data Breach Compensation Calculator
- Get Help With Text Message Data Breach Claims
Data protection laws look to protect personal data and personally sensitive data. Personal data is identifiable information that is processed about you, the data subject, and personal data that is considered sensitive is information processed that tells something about you, such as your race, ethnicity, or for instance, your trade union status. Data controllers are generally organisations that will say why and how your data will be processed. And processors may act on the data controller’s behalf.
A personal data breach is a security issue that could mean your personal information has been:
- Lost or stolen
- Destroyed or altered
- The data is disclosed or shared without a lawful basis for doing so
- An unauthorised person gains access to the data.
This can happen through human error, such as a company sending your personal information via text message to the wrong mobile number.
The UK General Data Protection Regulation UK GDPR protects personal data. It also gives data subjects the right to make a personal data breach claim should those who have processed their data fail to comply with data protection law, and this causes them harm.
Due to data protection laws rights of individuals when an organisation collects their personal data have been increased. For organisations to protect the personal or sensitive data they collect, they can do the following:
- Adhere to the key principles of the UK GDPR
- Invest in security to protect the data
- Train employees to protect the personal data they handle
If an organisation shares personal processed data via text message without a lawful basis, this may be considered a breach of data protection. Furthermore, purpose limitation is a key principle of the UK GDPR. Purpose limitation means that an organisation cannot use data for any purpose other than its intended purpose.
So if, for example, a business collects customer information for operational purposes and then uses the data to send customers marketing messages, this could breach the UK GDPR. What can you do about unsolicited text messages? Can you report them to the Information Commissioner’s Office ICO? The ICO are an independent public body set up to uphold the rights of data subjects. They can investigate when data protection laws are not adhered to.
A text message data breach could expose personal data or sensitive data. Personal data is information which identifies a person. Here are some examples of personal data
- Home address
- Date of birth
- Email address
- Phone number
- Bank account
- Debit card
- Credit card
- Your username and password for an online account
In addition, a data breach can expose data that is sensitive. Under the UK GDPR, data about one’s characteristics is known as special category data that needs added protection. The data includes information about their religious beliefs or data concerning their health. Special category data have additional protections because of their sensitive nature.
What Are The Consequences Of A Text Message Data Breach?
A text message data protection breach can expose personal information. The victim may experience distress, which can develop into mental health problems in extreme circumstances. What’s more, the victim of a data breach may lose money or assets after the incident.
A text message data breach can happen because an employee made a mistake. However, sometimes a criminal or person with ill intentions deliberately causes a data breach. Here are examples of how a data breach via text message could occur:
- An organisation could send a text message containing personal data to the wrong person. Therefore, the personal data would be shared with a person who does not have the authorisation to view it.
- Or an organisation may send out a mass text message without readacting your personal data first.
- An organisation could share information via text message without a lawful basis.
If an organisation breaches your personal data via text message and it causes stress or financial loss, call our team to see if you have a valid claim.
If your personal data breach claim succeeds, your settlement can include up to two heads of claim. You could receive the following:
- Material damage is compensation for expenses and financial losses associated with the data breach.
- Non-material damage is compensation for the emotional distress or mental health injuries the data breach caused.
You can use this table as a psychological injury calculator. The table contains bracket figures that can be used for non-material damage. We used the 16th edition Judicial College Guidelines to create the compensation table. The guidelines were updated for 2022.
|Type Of Damages||Notes And Severity||Damages|
|Psychiatric Damage||Severe - Those in this category will have serious problems in coping with education, work and life in general.||£54,830 to £115,730|
|Psychiatric Damage||Moderately Severe - Those in this category will face problems when coping with work, education and life. They have a better outlook.||£19,070 to £54,830|
|Psychiatric Damage||Moderate - The person will suffer in similar ways to the other categories. They will have made a marked improvement.||£5,860 to £19,070|
|Psychiatric Damage||Less Severe - The award takes things such as the impact on daily activity and sleep into account.||£1,540 to £5,860|
|PTSD||Severe - PTSD which causes permanent effects on the person. They are unable to work or function to the degree they did before.||£59,860 to £100,670|
|PTSD||Moderately Severe - There is a better prognosis and with professional help the person could recover to some degree.||£23,150 to £59,860|
|PTSD||Moderate - Largely this person should recover. If there are any persisting symptoms, these are not majorly disabling.||£8,180 to £23,150|
|PTSD||Less Severe - A full recovery can be made in 2 years with only minor symptoms lasting beyond this.||£3,950 to £8,180|
If you win your claim, the data breach compensation you receive may vary depending on many factors. However, if you call our advice line, we can estimate how much you can claim accurately, depending on actual events. The compensation table does not include material damage.
Experiencing a personal data breach does not automatically guarantee you the right to make a data breach claim. To claim the compensation, you will need evidence to prove the following:
- Firstly, an organisation breached your personal data via text message because it failed to follow data protection regulations.
- Secondly, you either experienced financial losses, emotional distress or psychological damage because of the data breach.
If you have a valid reason to claim, we can appoint our panel of data protection solicitors to handle your case.
You can make a No Win No Fee claim. Therefore, instead of paying an upfront solicitors fee before work begins on your claim, you will pay a success fee if your data breach claim succeeds.
You will not pay a success fee if you do not win your claim. What’s more, the rate your success fee is charged is capped. Therefore if you win your claim, most of the data breach compensation payment goes straight to you.
To see if you can claim compensation, please get in touch with us today:
- Dial 0161 696 9685 for your no-obligation consultation
- Contact us by completing our online claims form
- Alternatively, use the Live Support widget to ask us a question
Related Data Breach Claims
Here is more information about data protection and making a data breach claim.
Securing Your Devices – a National Cyber Security Centre guide
How To Report A Scam – A Citizen’s Advice guide
How To Protect Yourself From Nuisance Calls – an ICO guide
If you want to know more about claiming compensation after a text message data breach, please call Advice.co.uk today.