Apologies for not getting back to you sooner, I experienced some temporary connection issues and could not get back on the site until now. All appears to be resolved now so I can continue dealing with your query.
Using the photograph without your permission is indeed a likely copyright breach because the copyright will belong to the creator of the photo, i.e. the person who took the photo. The issue here is that unless it was a ‘selfie’ the copyright will not belong to you, but to the photographer. Therefore they will have the right to decide how the photo is used and they will have the right to pursue a breach of copyright. Just because you are the subject of the photo does not give you copyright protection over it, unless the photographer had formally assigned their copyright to you. Also a breach of copyright is not punishable by simply penalising the party in breach – the copyright owner can only pursue the party in breach for losses suffered as a result of the breach, such as loss of revenue for not paying a usage fee, etc. In these circumstances it is highly unlikely any such losses would have been incurred and even if they had, they would be nominal.
The other concern would be breach of data protection. This would only be relevant if the photo was already in their possession and they had a responsibility to use it for a specific purpose. So if they were given this photo by you when you started with them as part of the recruitment process and stored it whilst you were employed, but then they used it for a purpose other than the one they had originally obtained it for, that could amount to a breach of data protection. The issue however is similar to the one above – you cannot just penalise them for this and can only take further action if you have suffered losses as a result, they cannot just be penalised.
So you do have a couple of ways to raise this issue with them but in terms of actually taking action to get anything out of it the reality is that it would either be not possible or the damages would be minimal and possibly not worth pursuing through court.
This is your basic legal position. I have more detailed advice for you in terms of the options you have on taking this further and the steps you must follow, which I wish to discuss so please take a second to leave a positive rating for the service so far (by selecting 3, 4 or 5 stars) and I can continue with that and answer any further questions you may have. Don’t worry, there is no extra cost and leaving a rating will not close the question and we can continue this discussion. Thank you