News

Supreme Court blocks case against Google

The judgment in Lloyd v Google was handed down this week by the Supreme Court but it was not good news for the action brought by representative claimant Richard LLoyd, alleging breaches of the Data Protection Act 1998 by Google. Lloyd, a consumer activist, had brought the case, representing Apple iPhone users in England and Wales.

Google was alleged to have ‘illegally misused the data of millions of iPhone users’, through the ‘clandestine tracking and collation’ of information about internet usage on iPhones’ Safari browser, Lloyd’s legal team argued - backed by litigation funders. Essentially, it was suggested that Google was illegally misusing data.

The Supreme Court held that ‘an individual is only entitled to compensation under section 13 [of the DPA 1998] where “damage” – or in some circumstances “distress” – is suffered’, and thus determined that the case against Google was ‘doomed to fail’, refusing permission for Lloyd to serve proceedings on Google outside of jurisdiction.

While this particular case cannot continue, Lloyd suggested outside the court that while the bar has now been set extremely high, the court has endorsed the procedure, so other claims may now be able to come forward and succeed. Consumers are more than ever aware of their own privacy, and lawyers are suggesting that this area will be a strongly contested area.

Meanwhile, businesses should be reminded that while this case has set the bar high in terms of requirement of evidence (essentially requiring the consumer to not just show a data breach but that this led to evidenced financial loss or distress) in due course, it may lead to more consumer claims over data breaches not just in relation to so-called tech giants but also ordinary businesses. Once again businesses are reminded to ensure that policies, procedures and training are up-to-date.

Posted on 11/12/2021 by Ortolan

Get in Touch

If you would like to know more about Ortolan Legal and how we can help you reduce your ongoing recruitment costs, get in touch!

Email us now

   Or call 020 3743 0600

I have worked with Ortolan Legal since 2010 and used their services extensively. They have provided corporate and commercial legal advice and we have also drawn on their capability in the areas of employment law, dispute resolution and property law. What makes them so different is their ability consistently to deliver commercially focussed and high quality advice at a price point which simply cannot be matched by other law firms. They aim to strip out unnecessary overhead costs, concentrate on the quality of their core service and pass on these cost savings to their clients. It works.

Charlie Blackburn, Entrepreneur and co-founder of Brighttalk
See All
Receive news & updates from Ortolan Legal

Meet the Team

  • Nick Benson Nick Benson I qualified as a commercial and corporate solicitor…
  • Liz Delgado Liz Delgado I qualified as a solicitor in 1995 after studying…
  • Carrie Beaumont Carrie Beaumont I qualified as an Employment specialist in 2008. I…