Grocery giant Morrisons is being sured by thousands of current and former employees in a class action over damages brought about from a data leak.
The case at London’s High Court follows a breach of security in 2014, when a former senior internal auditor, Andrew Skelton, working at the retailer’s Bradford HQ, posted the payroll information of nearly 100,000 employees on the internet.
The information included bank, salary and national insurance details, phone numbers and addresses.
Skelton was found to bore a grudge against Morrisons and was jailed for eight years in 2015 fro fraud, securing unauthorised access to computer material and disclosing personal data.
The new case is being viewed as the first data leek class action in the UK, with legal experts agreeing that the case has potential implications for every individual and business in the country.
The trial is concerned with the use of liability, involving claims brought by 5,518 current and former Morris’s staff, who allege the company failed to prevent the leek.
The claimants also allege that the data leek exposed them to identity theft and potential financial loss, with Morrisons responsible for breaches of privacy confidence and data protection laws.
The lawsuit is being brought bylaw firm JMW Solicitors.
Discussing the case, Nick McAleenan, partner at JMW Solicitors said: “The court will decide whether Morrisons bears any legal responsibility for the misuse and disclosure of the payroll information of the many thousands of people bringing claims in this case.”
Morrisons denies liability.