Concern for employers as Court of Appeal uphold Morrisons data breach ruling

Is an employer liable in damages to employees whose personal and confidential information has been criminally misused by another employee in breach of data protection laws and obligations of confidence? Yes, said the Court of Appeal in William Morrison Supermarkets plc v various claimants.

Mr Skelton (S), an internal auditor with Morrisons, aggrieved by disciplinary action taken against him, posted the names, addresses, bank details, salaries and national insurance numbers of over 100,000 fellow employees on an online file sharing site as well as providing this information to three newspapers. S’s aim was to cause damage to Morrisons. He was convicted of fraud and imprisoned for eight years.

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