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Local authority ordered to pay mother fleeing ex-partner £10k in compensation following data breach

Hampshire County Council should pay £10,000 in compensation after a mother who was fleeing her ex-partner had her address exposed in a data breach, Portsmouth Magistrates' Court has ruled.

The mother and her three children had fled their home and relocated away from her ex-partner in 2016. Following the move, the mother enrolled the children at a new school.

However, according to a report from local Portsmouth paper, The News, the school disclosed to the ex-partner that the children were there.

The ex-partner then entered the school premises and obtained the mother's new address from inside. Weeks of harassment followed, The News reported.

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Last month, the court found that Hampshire was liable for misuse of the mother's private information, breach of confidence and breach of the Data Protection Act 1998.

The council has paid damages to the claimant.

A spokesperson for Hampshire County Council said that while the local authority rigorously defended the case in court, it respected the judge's decision.

The spokesperson added: "The incident occurred in 2016 and did not result in a policy review. The school GDPR policy was updated in 2020 and the former policy was therefore superseded".

Adam Carey

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