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Man finds new owner of his computer console online using his login details.

Your data is a valuable commodity, but all too often the businesses we trust do not protect this as well as they should do. So, it's no wonder that data breaches are on the rise.

What happened in this case?

Mr Andrew* sold his games console to a high street retailer under its 'buy back' service. This gave him the option to repurchase it at a later date. However, Mr Andrew didn't take up this offer, and his console was then sold on.

Disturbingly, Mr Andrew then saw the person who bought his console online, using his login details. The new owner had access to his personal information and some of his bank details. Understandably this caused Mr Andrew a great deal of distress.

According to the retailer's data protection protocols, every console should be erased of all personal information before it is sold to a new customer. In this case, this didn't happen.

How did we help?

After searching online for a data privacy solicitor, Mr Andrew contacted Hayes Connor for our help. He gave us a call and found us easy to talk to. Next, we sent him a detailed questionnaire which he filled out and returned along with some supporting documents so we could review his case.

We took on Mr Andrew's case on a no-win, no-fee basis. We instructed our appointed barrister to provide expert advice on his prospects of success and the amount of compensation he might win. At this stage, we also gathered additional evidence from Mr Andrew.

Then we sent a letter before action (LBA) to the retailer. The LBA let the business know that we would be starting proceedings against it and that we were very serious about getting Mr Andrew the compensation he deserved.

The retailer responded, attempting to justify why it felt Mr Andrew's claim was not relevant. However, we replied setting out why it was, and we requested that they supply a number of documents as evidence.

At this stage, we also sent a 'Part 36' offer to the retailer. This is designed to encourage parties to settle disputes without going to trial. However, the company rejected this offer and referred us to PlayStation's guidance when selling on a games console.

In response, we re-requested that the retailer confirm the guidance it provides employees before selling on electronic devices. And, following this, the buisness made Mr Andrew's an offer of £2,000. We suggested that this should be increased to £3,000 (and costs) and this offer was accepted.

Mr Andrew found working with Hayes Connor Solicitors "really easy and very helpful." When asked if the documentation we sent was easy to understand he said: "Yes definitely and if I didn't understand they made me understand straight away."

Mr Andrew is happy with the result of his case and the excellent service he received. Speaking about his overall view of making a data breach claim he said that he is "really satisfied with Hayes Connor and would never have to think twice about recommending them to anyone else".

Data breaches by private companies

Private companies must be held accountable for data losses. With large-scale, high-profile hacks and breaches happening more and more often, this could be the only way to ensure that businesses implement more secure processes.

Most data breaches are preventable. However, companies don't like investing in cybersecurity, updating their systems, or training their staff. Where your data has been put at risk or misused because of the negligence of others, it's essential that you are compensated, and action is taken to make sure it never happens again.

At Hayes Connor Solicitors, we've been helping people to do just that for over 50 years, so we know what it takes to make a successful data breach compensation claim.

Find out more about making a NO WIN NO FEE compensation claim, or contact us today for a free initial assessment.

*Name has been changed.