Category: Police Data Breaches
It has been three years since a number of West Midlands Police data breaches of 2016 were first reported, but we believe that they still provide a key example of the damage that can be done when officers fail in their data protection duties. In 2017, it was reported that police officers in the West Midlands branch were reportedly responsible for a total of 24 data breaches in the previous year.
The figure is significant when it is considered how easily such breaches could have been avoided. The majority were caused by human error, which can generally be avoided with more caution and rigorous data protection practices.
As a data controller, the police force holds perhaps one of the most sensitive stores of information in the UK. From criminal records to victims’ details, it is vital that this information is kept secure, or there can be profound harmful consequences. If you have been adversely impacted by a police data breach, you may be eligible to claim compensation on a No Win, No Fee basis.
It is understood that a serious Greater Manchester Police data breach may have affected thousands of victims of serious crimes.
In an exclusive story broken from ManchesterMill.co.uk, it has been reported that a whistle-blower has revealed the details of the serious data leak to the media. The coverage confirms that information had been uploaded to a “test system” and may have been accessible on a third-party IT contractor’s website for some two months.
Information may have included the names and addresses of victims of serious crime, including sexual assault and domestic abuse. Data may have also included the details for informants and witnesses involved in cases as well.
It’s understood that disciplinary action has taken place in a number of cases for the misuse of police computer systems in England and Wales.
There have been cases where staff have reportedly accessed the Police National Computer and other databases to look at information with authority or reason. In many cases, staff have looked at information about friends, family, neighbours and colleagues. In more serious cases, data may have reportedly been passed to criminals.
This is serious and incredibly worrying. It’s important that any victims of the police misusing their computer systems know their rights.
We’ve been contacted for help after news of the PFEW cyber attacks hit the headlines. We’ve taken cases forward on a No Win, No Fee basis.
This latest action is one of the dozens different data breach group actions and multi-party actions we’re fighting for justice in. That’s on top of the thousands who have come to us for help for individual cases having been at the forefront of data breach compensation action since 2015.
Unlike some law firms, we don’t just register information and wait a while until we can determine if there’s a claim to make. We take action right away, and we offer our clients No Win, No Fee representation as we fight for justice for data breach victims.
We’ve taken cases on with our No Win, No Fee policy for victims of the recent Police Federation of England and Wales data breach incidents.
The cyber attacks that hit the PFEW took place in March 2019; the first on 9th, and the second on the 21st. Neither were thought to have been specifically targeting PFEW and are understood to have been part of a wider malware incident.
PFEW has confirmed that they’re unable to rule out that information has been exposed. As they’re unable to rule it out, we can take claims for data breach compensation forward for anyone suffering distress as a result of the incident. There could be as many as 120,000 police employees that have been hit by the breaches.
We can help you if you need to make a claim for compensation as a result of a police data breach. Public sector breaches can be common, and we often help people in this area.
Our Data Breach Lawyers are actively involved in a number of individual data breach claims. This includes police data breach compensation cases. This is in addition to the over 20 different data breach actions we’re also representing people in.
We’re specialist data breach lawyers, so if you’ve suffered as a result of a police data breach, we can help you.