In August 2019, over 750 pension benefit statements, meant for officers of Sussex Police, were sent to the wrong postal addresses. Equiniti, a company that helps manage company pensions, was responsible for distributing the statements. Since the Equiniti pension data breach, we’ve been contacted by many officers, some of whom have suffered significant shock, distress, anxiety, and stress as a direct result of the privacy violation.
And that’s to be expect. Not least because the compromised statements included a considerable amount of personal and highly sensitive data. And, the possible damage should this fall into the wrong hands should not be underestimated. Criminals are perfectly capable of committing both identity fraud and financial theft with this information.
The breach wasn’t the fault of cybercriminals. Instead, it was caused by a simple system failure. Sussex Police had provided Equiniti with the correct, updated contact addresses for the officers involved, and these should have been updated on the relevant database. But this wasn’t done properly, and many statements were sent to the wrong house.
Furthermore, there is no way of knowing if everyone who received a statement meant for a Sussex police officer disposed of it immediately, securely and correctly.
Who was affected by the Equiniti data breach?
Over 750 Sussex police officers have been affected by this breach.
A data breach is a serious failure, and it looks like Equiniti has neglected to protect these officers’ privacy rights. If your data was involved in this breach, you might be able to make an Equiniti compensation claim.
Claiming for emotional distress.
Being the victim of a crime can have a significant impact on you mentally and physically. For some people, the effects can include a lack of sleep, feeling ill, unsettled or confused. Stress can also affect your friends, your family and your job.
If you have suffered a privacy violation caused by an organisation breaching any part of the Data Protection Act, you have a right to claim compensation for your emotional distress. You can also claim for financial losses, and any loss of privacy suffered as a result of a data breach (e.g. having an email address stolen).
Claiming for emotional distress after the Equiniti pension data breach?
Following a data breach, people often feel shock, anger, fear, helplessness and panic. These feelings might develop immediately or be experienced much later. And they can last for some time.
The bottom line is that data breaches can be devastating. And they can put a person’s mental health at risk. So, victims must be able to seek help and get the compensation they need to get their lives back on track.
Thankfully, over the last few years, people are waking up to the reality of mental health. And there is a greater awareness about the lasting effects of physiological suffering and anguish.
How do I make a compensation claim against Equiniti?
Keller Postman UK is considering launching a group action on behalf of victims of the Equiniti pensions data breach. A group action claim is where a group of people – in this case hundreds of people – have been affected by the same issue. Where cases are very similar, group actions can be a powerful tool and can have a bigger impact than a single claim.
To join our Equiniti data breach group action compensation claim, you will need to register with us. This guarantees that you will form part of any future compensation claim. We will also keep you updated as investigations into the Equiniti pension data breach progress. There are no costs to register and no obligation to proceed.