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22 October 2018

In a landmark ruling from the UK Court of Appeal, Morrisons is being held vicariously liable for the criminal actions of a former employee. This could get expensive.

Disgruntled auditor, Andrew Skelton, was jailed for eight years, way back in 2015, after stealing personal data of 100,000 staff, including bank and salary details. He then leaked the information to national newspapers and published it online.

5000 affected staff brought a group action against Morrisons, for the upset and distress that it caused.

Morrisons, who worked quickly to remediate the breach, has said it will appeal to the Supreme Court, as the only UK court to sit above the Court of Appeal.

The actions create very interesting implications of the impact that security breaches can have on companies. While many have highlighted the dramatic increase of potential fines under GDPR, these group actions could both exceed and duplicate those fines.

It suggests that data security is about to be taken a lot more seriously.

We think they could have done with data protection advisory services from DataGRC and the Data Sentinel online Data Protection training, Records Management and Compliance Assessment tools.

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