Harassment and privacy claims arising from dating apps

If one recent survey is to be believed, nearly a quarter of Britons use dating apps.  A dating app is a smart phone application which typically allows the user to search or “swipe” through other singles – often presented like a never-ending deck of cards. If the user swipes right, this indicates that they ‘like’ the person. When the same person swipes right, this generates a “match” and each individual has the facility to instant message one another, thus enabling – in theory – a romance to blossom. The best known app of this type is Tinder, but it is a model that has been used or varied by several different platforms.

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Fines for data breaches and the General Data Protection Regulation

Much has been made of the imposition of the General Data Protection Regulation (“GDPR”), to be integrated into UK law via the Data Protection Bill (“DPB”), in anticipation of its coming into force on 25 May 2018. The rationale behind the GDPR is to provide a legal framework that acknowledges the sensitivity of personal data (such as names, NI numbers, IP addresses and personally identifying information) and g its misuse in the digital era.  One feature of the GDPR is a far greater focus on fines.

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Brett Wilson LLP and its lawyers recommended in Legal 500 directory

Brett Wilson LLP has been ranked in the 2017 edition of the Legal 500 as a leading firm in the fields of Reputation Management, White Collar Crime/Fraud and General Crime.  The latest edition was published on 11 October 2017 and marks the sixth consecutive year that Brett Wilson LLP has featured in the directory.

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Business as usual?  The Court of Appeal considers the threshold for bringing a libel claim in Lachaux v Independent Print Ltd.

The long-awaited decision in Lachaux v Independent Print Ltd [2017] EWCA Civ 1334 has brought some badly-needed clarity and certainty to the law of libel, and it seems fair to say that reports of the death of the libel writ have been greatly exaggerated.  The decision interprets both the meaning of section 1(1) of the Defamation Act 2013 – “the serious harm” test – and determines the point at which a claim for libel crystallises.

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Bloomberg Interview: Max Campbell discusses coming changes to data protection law

Brett Wilson LLP solicitor Max Campbell has been interviewed by Bloomberg on the ramifications of the General Data Protection Regulation and domestic legislation due to come into force over the next year.  The legislation codifies the ‘right to be forgotten’ principle and introduces a ‘right to erasure’.

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Libel/Defamation: Libel, privacy breaches and harassment on Snapchat

Snapchat is a multimedia messaging mobile application (app) that allows users to send videos and photos to their contacts. The recipient can normally only view an image/video for a limited period of time (perhaps just a few seconds).  This encourages some users to send risqué (sometimes explicit) images/videos to one another. This feature is far from foolproof. A receiving party may take a screenshot of the image or a photo and/or video of the screen with a separate digital camera/phone.

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Libel/Defamation: £25,000 libel damages and indemnity costs for malicious complaint to employer

In Singh v Weayou [2017] EWHC 2102 (QB), the Claimant Keith Singh, a Night Services Coordinator at the Priory Hospital in Roehampton, sued the Defendant Joseph Weayou, a Health Care Assistant at the same hospital, for libel and malicious falsehood in respect of an email Mr Weayou had sent on 24 August 2015 to the HR Manager and a senior manager at the hospital.  In the email, Mr Weayou made a number of allegations, including, most seriously, that Mr Singh had sexually assaulted him.

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Defamation, privacy and harassment on WhatsApp: a new legal frontier?

Part of the appeal of WhatsApp, the instant messaging service, is that it allows you to join groups from which you can send messages and pictures to other participants across the globe with relative ease and at no cost. Gone are the days when parties or other social events are organised by email or invitations sent by post (at least amongst younger generations). WhatsApp provides immediacy and is user-friendly.  No surprise, then, that Facebook bought it for £11.4bn in 2014.

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Defamation and privacy claims: making a statement in open court

In Sir Cliff Richard OBE v the BBC and Chief Constable of South Yorkshire Police [2017] EWHC 1648 (Ch), Mr Justice Mann reviewed the law on statements in open court, and the grounds upon which the court might refuse to permit them.

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