GDPR Breach Notification

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GDPR introduces a duty on all organisations to report certain types of data breach to the relevant supervisory authority, and in some cases to the individuals affected.

I have had a breach – what do I need to do?

You may need to inform the information commissioner

You may need to inform the individuals affected

You have 72 hours to report it

GDPR Breach Notification Details

The following text is taken from the UK Information Commissioners Office: https://ico.org.uk/for-organisations/data-protection-reform/overview-of-the-gdpr/breach-notification/

What is a personal data breach?

A ‘personal data breach’ means a breach of security leading to the accidental or unlawful destruction, loss, alteration, unauthorised disclosure of, or access to, personal data transmitted, stored or otherwise processed;

What breaches do I need to notify the relevant supervisory authority about?

You only have to notify the relevant supervisory authority of a breach where it is likely to result in a risk to the rights and freedoms of individuals. If unaddressed such a breach is likely to have a significant detrimental effect on individuals – for example, result in discrimination, damage to reputation, financial loss, loss of confidentiality or any other significant economic or social disadvantage.

This has to be assessed on a case by case basis. For example, you will need to notify the relevant supervisory authority about a loss of customer details where the breach leaves individuals open to identity theft. On the other hand, the loss or inappropriate alteration of a staff telephone list, for example, would not normally meet this threshold.

When do individuals have to be notified?

Where a breach is likely to result in a high risk to the rights and freedoms of individuals you must notify those concerned directly.

A ‘high risk’ means the threshold for notifying individuals is higher than for notifying the relevant supervisory authority.

What information must a breach notification contain?

The nature of the personal data breach including, where possible:

  • the categories and approximate number of individuals concerned; and
  • the categories and approximate number of personal data records concerned;
  • The name and contact details of the data protection officer (if your organisation has one) or other contact point where more information can be obtained;
  • A description of the likely consequences of the personal data breach; and
  • A description of the measures taken, or proposed to be taken, to deal with the personal data breach and, where appropriate, of the measures taken to mitigate any possible adverse effects.

How do I notify a breach?

A notifiable breach has to be reported to the relevant supervisory authority within 72 hours of the organisation becoming aware of it. The GDPR recognises that it will often be impossible to investigate a breach fully within that time-period and allows you to provide information in phases.

If the breach is sufficiently serious to warrant notification to the public, the organisation responsible must do so without undue delay.

Failing to notify a breach when required to do so can result in a significant fine up to 10 million Euros or 2 per cent of your global turnover.

What should I do to prepare for breach reporting?

You should make sure that your staff understands what constitutes a data breach and that this is more than a loss of personal data.

You should ensure that you have an internal breach reporting procedure in place. This will facilitate decision-making about whether you need to notify the relevant supervisory authority or the public.

In light of the tight timescales for reporting a breach – it is important to have robust breach detection, investigation and internal reporting procedures in place.

The GDPR Regulations

The following is taken from the Official Journal of the European Union: http://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/PDF/?uri=CELEX:32016R0679&from=EN

A personal data breach may, if not addressed in an appropriate and timely manner, result in physical, material or non-material damage to natural persons such as loss of control over their personal data or limitation of their rights, discrimination, identity theft or fraud, financial loss, unauthorised reversal of pseudonymisation, damage to reputation, loss of confidentiality of personal data protected by professional secrecy or any other significant economic or social disadvantage to the natural person concerned. Therefore, as soon as the controller becomes aware that a personal data breach has occurred, the controller should notify the personal data breach to the supervisory authority without undue delay and, where feasible, not later than 72 hours after having become aware of it, unless the controller is able to demonstrate, in accordance with the accountability principle, that the personal data breach is unlikely to result in a risk to the rights and freedoms of natural persons. Where such notification cannot be achieved within 72 hours, the reasons for the delay should accompany the notification and information may be provided in phases without undue further delay.

The controller should communicate to the data subject a personal data breach, without undue delay, where that personal data breach is likely to result in a high risk to the rights and freedoms of the natural person in order to allow him or her to take the necessary precautions. The communication should describe the nature of the personal data breach as well as recommendations for the natural person concerned to mitigate potential adverse effects. Such communications to data subjects should be made as soon as reasonably feasible and in close cooperation with the supervisory authority, respecting guidance provided by it or by other relevant authorities such as law-enforcement authorities. For example, the need to mitigate an immediate risk of damage would call for prompt communication with data subjects whereas the need to implement appropriate measures against continuing or similar personal data breaches may justify more time for communication.

In setting detailed rules concerning the format and procedures applicable to the notification of personal data breaches, due consideration should be given to the circumstances of that breach, including whether or not personal data had been protected by appropriate technical protection measures, effectively limiting the likelihood of identity fraud or other forms of misuse. Moreover, such rules and procedures should take into account the legitimate interests of law-enforcement authorities where early disclosure could unnecessarily hamper the investi­ gation of the circumstances of a personal data breach.
(89) Directive 95/46/EC provided for a general obligation to notify the processing of personal data to the supervisory authorities. While that obligation produces administrative and financial burdens, it did not in all cases contribute to improving the protection of personal data. Such indiscriminate general notification obligations should therefore be abolished, and replaced by effective procedures and mechanisms which focus instead on those types of processing operations which are likely to result in a high risk to the rights and freedoms of natural persons by virtue of their nature, scope, context and purposes. Such types of processing operations may be those which in, particular, involve using new technologies, or are of a new kind and where no data protection impact assessment has been carried out before by the controller, or where they become necessary in the light of the time that has elapsed since the initial processing.

Agenci GDPR Breach Notification Management

Agenci provide GDPR compliant breach notification and fully manage the process on your behalf. If you need help and support call now on 03455 760 999

GDPR Breach Notification