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Hammersmith Medicines Research Data Breach

Hammersmith Medicines Research Data Breach

Hammersmith Medicines Research revealed last year that they had suffered a ransomware attack where the private and personal data of thousands of patients was breached. If you have been affected by the Hammersmith Medicines Research data breach, you could be entitled to claim compensation up to £5000. HNK Solicitors have a team of expert data breach solicitors who can help you pursue a claim on a no-win, no-fee basis, and they will fight to get you the compensation you deserve. 

On 14 March 2020, the Maze ransomware group targeted the computer systems of Hammersmith Medicines Research (HMR), an organisation that conducts early clinical drug and vaccine trials. The cybercriminals accessed the data of more than 2,300 former volunteer patients and demanded payment in return for not making this information public. This is a clear breach of GDPR, and those affected could be entitled to claim compensation. 

Step 1

Get in touch using our contact forms or any details provided throughout the site.

Step 2

We arrange a free consultation with you to discuss the case

Step 3

If accepted we will action your case on a no win no fee basis.

According to media reports, HMR did not have the funds to pay the ransom. Malcolm Boyce, managing and clinical director and doctor at HMR said: “We have no intention of paying. I would rather go out of business than pay a ransom to these people”. However, in response to this refusal, many of these records were published online. The affected people had all taken part in research trials. 

Hammersmith Medicines Research stated they have reported the incident to the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO). The ICO said they are making enquiries.  

What data was taken in the Hammersmith Medicines Research data breach?

The files are likely to date back 8 to 20 years. The information that was accessed was extremely sensitive and confidential and includes:

  • Names 
  • Dates of birth 
  • Identity documents (scanned passports, National Insurance card, driving licence and/or visa documents, and any photographs taken at the screening visit) 
  • Consent forms 
  • Health questionnaires 
  • Information from GPs 
  • Some test results (including, in a few cases only, positive tests for HIV, hepatitis, and drugs of abuse). 
  • The hackers may also have had access to bank details.
  •  

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Who is affected by the Hammersmith Medicines Research data breach?

The published records, according to Hammersmith Medicines Research, were from several volunteers with surnames beginning with D, G, I or J. HMR, however, acknowledges that even if your details were not among those released, criminals could still have your information. If you have taken part in a trial at Hammersmith Medicines Research in the past 20 years, it is possible you could have been affected. If you are afraid that your details have been disclosed, you should email HMR at DataProtection@hmrlondon.com.

How do I know if I have been affected by the Hammersmith Medicines Research data breach? 

Following the data breach, HMR sent an email to those affected on 6th April. The email states that the information was released online during 21-23 March 2020. It also reassures victims that the data has been taken down since the release. If you concerned that your details may have been breached, you should check your emails for an email from Hammersmith Medicines Research. If you have not received an email from HMR, but are still concerned your data has been breached, you should check your spam folder.

 

If you have received this email, you have likely been affected. If so, contact HNK today and we can pursue a claim for you on a no-win, no-fee basis.


How can HNK Solicitors help with my data breach claim?

HNK Solicitors have a team of expert data protection solicitors with many years of experience dealing with data breach claims. We have been successful in obtaining compensation for clients who have been affected by data breaches against a wide variety of defendants based in England and other countries across the world. Under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), you have the right to claim compensation for any inconvenience, distress, or monetary loss you have suffered as a result of your data being breached.

 

You have the legal right to have your personal information kept private, and any companies that do not comply with data protection laws should be held to account. If you have been affected by the Hammersmith Medicines Research data breach, contact HNK Solicitors for a free no-obligation consultation. Our experts will be able to offer advice on pursuing a claim against Hammersmith Medicines Research, and we may be able to mount a group litigation case against the trust to get those affected the compensation they deserve.

Free Consultation

Contact HNK Solicitors to arrange a free no-obligation consultation where we can offer free advice on pursuing a claim against Hammersmith Medicines Research.

No-win-no-fee

HNK offers a no-win, no-fee service, which means it will not cost you a penny upfront to start your claim. This means you can pursue your claim on a no-risk basis and only have to pay a small percentage if your claim is successful.

Client Communication

We understand this process can be distressing, so we handle everything for you and keep you up to date throughout the whole process.
FAQ

Was Hammersmith Medicines Research responsible for the breach?

The breach occurred because the Maze ransomware group attacked the computer systems at HMR. HMR has not yet disclosed how the Maze group gained access to its network, but if poor security processes enabled the criminals to put former patients at risk, they will have questions to answer.

What is a group litigation case?

A group litigation/group action claim or case is where a group of people – which can be as many as thousands – have all been affected by the same issue. All the people in the group collectively bring their cases to court against the Defendant and fight together to get compensation. This strengthens their overall position and can make a big organisation take a matter more seriously. It can also increase their chances of settlement or success in litigation.

Just because you are part of a group litigation claim, this doesn’t mean that everyone in the group will receive the same amount of compensation. Every claim within the group is settled based on the individual’s situation.

What can I claim for?

If your data has been breached, you can claim for both damages and distress. So, you can claim for any financial losses or emotional distress you have suffered as a result of having your data stolen. However, you also have the right to claim, even if you haven’t suffered as a result of the failure to protect your data as, by law, they must keep your personal data safe.

How much will it cost?

Nothing upfront. If we deem you have a case that has a high chance of success, we will offer you a no-win, no-fee agreement. This means it won’t cost you a penny to start your claim, and you won’t have to pay a thing if your claim is unsuccessful.

If your case is successful, the legal costs which consist of the work HNK Solicitors has done for you and disbursement costs such as court and barrister fees will be recovered from the Defendant themselves and the compensation you are rewarded. HNK cap the costs they take from your compensation at 25%, so no matter what you will get at least 75% of the compensation in the end.

Can’t find what you’re looking for?

Let us know what you’re looking for and we will get back to you as soon as we can.

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