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F E Smith
F E Smith, Advocate
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 10231
Experience:  I have been practising for 30 years.
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My former colleague used my old employer's name (she is

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Hello, my former colleague used my old employer's name (she is still employed there), pretending that this is HR requirements and have accessed to my personal academic records from my university. I then discovered that it was nothing to do with HR procedure nor required by my old employer. There is no actual damage to my knowledge, but it is creepy and intrusion of my privacy that someone unauthorized (but pretended to be authorised) has accessed my personal academic records which are supposed to be confidential. What rights do I have against my former colleague and is there any way I can seek compensation against her? I don't want to damage my relationship with my old employer or my university.

With regard to seeking compensation, you are entitled to be put back into position that you would have been had any damage not occurred. What loss have you suffered? This is what the court would ask.

You say that a former colleague accessed your personal academic records. If they did that without consent and the records are on a computer, then it is a criminal offence under the Computer Misuse Act. That is a police matter but the police are unlikely to prosecute unless there has been some kind of loss or if it’s some kind of high profile records. By all means report it to the police but don’t expect a prosecution to ensue.

You would be able to seek compensation from your former colleague, under the above act regardless of whether there is a criminal prosecution or not provided you can suffer some kind of damage or loss. It appears that you can’t, it has just been upsetting for you. Whilst that would be classed as a loss, it is unlikely to be worth much and certainly not worth taking to court.

What you also have to remember is that there is no legal aid for this and you will be faced with either paying your own solicitors costs or taking the matter to court yourself. It’s not a matter that you would find any solicitors would take on for you on a no win no fee basis.

I’m sorry, I wish I could give you a more favourable answer.
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Best wishes.


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