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Virgin, mystery extra line: 2 judgments for Data Protection breaches - so far!!


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Yes, but they definitely haven't supplied you with any data relating to that account?

 

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Letter sent recorded delivery. Today I will be registering on Moneyclaim and start preparing- the last 2 days have been getting the shop shut down for lockdown so now that's dealt with I have plenty m

These are the two incidents from Virgin Chat where their Live chat has informed me of the 'only 3 months' decision.... 15 April was the date they acknowledged receipt of my SAR.   Apparently

Happy news! Cheque for Warrant 2 (£302) has arrived in the post today Now to put in the N445 form to switch addresses for Warrant 1 as well...

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Okay – thanks. Just checking that when you eventually issue your claim, they won't be able to point at data which has already been supplied against some other SAR.

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592100299_2021-03-10(1).thumb.png.6217d873dacb801ab226f5437b4acca2.png*So this morning has brought- two identical emails thanking me for my SAR which they received on 22/2 (is it any wonder everyone's getting confused working out which SAR is being responded to when-this is why I have my paperwork in immaculate order...)

 

The letter before claim for the SAR for the mystery second line expires tomorrow-and they have replied! This is their beauty that they will be relying on for proof of purchase! I particularly like the fact in the second line, they even say they can't supply an original invoice. It appears to be some generic document to supply to an insurance company..

 

Tomorrow is also their deadline to confirm they have stopped processing my data or explain why they have the right to-or it's a report to the ICO.

 

Meanwhile, Sunderland court have confirmed that since I was able to get payment on the second claim at the Reading address, I can transfer the first claim over. Have filled out my N445 form-just not quite sure how to send it-does it need to be emailed or mailed as there appears to be no option to send it automatically.

 

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Thanks for this – but I'm confused again!

Is this their complete disclosure to the third SAR – the telephone specific one?

I can scarcely read what you put up. Would you mind posting it again please – larger or in PDF format.

Do I gather they are unable to supply an IMEI number for the handset that they apparently supplied you?

 

 

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Here we have it... 

Yes they had supplied an IMEI number, I just redacted it on the first one but I think we're past the point of worrying about identifying details. The phone number is exactly as they have supplied it-they put the stars in not me.

VirgPurc2LB.pdf

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So where are we. Is the SAR incomplete? And if it is what you think is missing?

Is it possible to put a block on that telephone using the IMEI number?

Although they say they don't have the original invoice, have we seen a copy of a contract – or any details of the date on which it was apparently bought?

They refer to an order number. Have you seen that order?

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The SAR is missing anything with my signature or proof it was me that took out the line.Virgin-despite saying they have a signed agreement-have never produced any invoice,agreement or contract at all let alone one that shows it was me who agreed to it.They have specified the date the phone was apparently bought(Aug 2019) but are unable (or unwilling) to say where. Interestingly, in the details I have received under Account History,it shows the date for this second line as being Aug 2018-the same time I purchased the original phone.

 

It appears the line already is blocked as a quick call to it just produces the message 'Calls to this number are not being accepted.If you have dialled correctly,the number is not available on this network'.


Next tasks are to resubmit the first claim from Sunderland to Reading, put in a third claim as they have still failed to fulfil the SAR, but whilst we're trapped in this cycle of submit claim->they fail to fulfil SAR->submit new claim it is still sitting on my credit report as a default.

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When you say that you are going to resubmit the first claim – I take it you are referring to the warrant of execution.

And yes it is still sitting on your credit report as a default. Of course we could proceed on that immediately – but the whole strategy for all these months has been to accumulate evidence hoping that we would stumble upon something which are not the whole puzzle.

We certainly haven't stumbled on any key but the evidence that we have uncovered so far – which is that there is no evidence despite statutory requests – is helpful. I still think that it is worth pursuing this third SAR in respect of the items that you have identified.

Although it's frustrating, I wonder whether in view of the fact that they have disclose this document, it's worth writing to them and giving them an extra five days and actually identifying the documents that you want produced and making it clear that your list of documents is not exhaustive.

I'm a bit anxious in case they say that there is absolutely nothing else and that they are prepared to confirm that in court – in which case you could lose the case if they defend it and you would lose the costs of bringing it.

Of course it would be very nice to get something from them confirming that there is nothing else – but maybe not if it comes at the expense of the defeat on this third claim. Maybe simply better to get it in writing from them before claim is issued.

I'm wondering whether it might be a good idea to write to them and say that in view of the most recent disclosure, can they confirm that they do not have X document and Z document and a B and C documents.

Of course they would still be in breach because they haven't met the deadline – and the documents they have supplied you with above is a new document which should have been disclosed.

But if you had a firm commitment from them that they didn't have those other documents, then that might be enough to use as the basis for challenging the substantive issue.

Once again, I really thought that their whole position would have unravelled by now and frankly I'm very surprised

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Yes I was referring to the first warrant.

And the postie has brought-another letter(undated) from Virgin...

'We're still looking into your complaint and will be in touch in a few days to talk about the next steps-we're sorry it's taking longer than usual.

Because your complaint is now 8 weeks old,you can choose to have it independently reviewed by CISAS'.

I'm sure the trees of the world are benefitting greatly from their many generic letters...

 

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Thanks.

When I suggest then maybe you send a note giving them a few more days and the list of the documents you think are particularly missing – with a warning that the claim will be issued if they don't respond.

At least then they won't be able to say that they didn't know what was being looked for and also they won't be able to say that they were given every last chance.

Today's Wednesday – may be if they given to next Wednesday and then issue the claim on Thursday

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Update :

Letter was sent off on 11 March giving them 5 days to reply with the documents(specifically anything that is a signed contract for the second handset or anything that shows my agreement to take it out). 

This morning a Virgin branded car pulled up outside and a Virgin man arrived with a letter- which turned out to be another generic 'We're still looking into your complaint and will be with you in a few days to tell you what's happening next' letter.
So they have failed once again to comply with the SAR or produce anything showing I agreed to the second handset.

 

Oxford County Court has confirmed that the payment of £302 for the second warrant(sent to their head office at Reading) has cleared,the cheque will be sent first thing tomorrow and will arrive in the mail by the beginning of next week.

 

To clarify exactly where we are

Warrant 1(sent to Sunderland): unable to find anyone to receive it there, should use a N445 to transfer it to Reading.

Warrant 2(sent to Reading):cheque is in the mail from the court.

SAR requests-still not complied with in full,failed to meet deadline for last letter before claim.

 

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Well they've had two clear extensions in response to the very minor communications they made with you – so maybe it's time to issue the next claim.

I suggested that this time is over £600 which will allow you to put the sheriffs in – but I can't imagine that this one will go as quietly as the others. I suppose I feel a bit nervous about putting in a claim for that value – I feel rather daring about it.

On the other hand, it doesn't do any harm to put that size of claim in – except that if you lose (unlikely) or if the amount you are claiming is reduced (extremely possible) then you may take a loss on the expenses incurred bringing the claim.
On the other hand you would still be quids in overall.

It seems to me that as all the efforts we have made so far to try and move them into some kind of action have come to nothing, maybe is the time to make this claim for a dramatic sum. The cost of enforcement using the sheriffs are typically about £2000 – to be borne by the defendant.
You would have to instruct the sheriffs on a no-enforcement-no-fee basis – which is absolutely the normal. You instruct sheriffs by going to the website of one of the many companies and then start the process directly. The County Court judgement has to be transferred-up to the High Court and I think it costs about 60 or 70 quid which you get back if the enforcement is successful. If the enforcement fails then that is the extent of your losses.

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By the way, the next step in this as I see it will be to prepare a case and to issue a claim for their breach of statutory duty in respect of the inaccurate processing of your data – on the basis that you have made substantial enquiries and they are unable to show any evidence that you have had any dealings with them in respect of this handset or the associated account.

Also a breach of contract and that they must have applied the data which they legitimately hold about you in respect of the legitimate account to the mystery account in order to be able to set it up and to use your address and your credit details to contact you and also to blight your credit file.

They would be bound to defend this and they would have to supply some credible evidence. Whatever evidence they supplied – but which they hadn't provided as part of SAR would simply compound their data protection breach.
One would hope that they suddenly became aware of the problem and in order to stop the proceedings going any further, would start talking to you about a substantial compensation as well as deleting all trace of this – but I think it would have to come with an admission of liability and not simply a without prejudice gesture of goodwill.

That's the plan – but nothing else has gone to plan – so why should this?

 

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No it doesn't. But does the 50 quid difference affect anything? Other than just a feeling about it?

In fact I was going to suggest £610 to make sure that you are well over the threshold – but as I say, I feel as if I'm being a bit daring about it. It's a crazy figure to go for – but on the other hand, the objective is to get them to wake up

I imagine that the reason they sent the note round in a car was because they realise that they were at the deadline.

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Claim amount Paper form fee Online claim fee
Up to £300 £35 £25
£300.01 to £500 £50 £35
£500.01 to £1,000 £70 £60
£1,000.01 to £1,500 £80 £70

 

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The claimant submitted a valid Data Protection Subject Access Request to the defendant on XXX date. The claimant has unilaterally extended the compliance date on two occasions but despite this, the defendant has not made a complete disclosure and is now in breach of their statutory duty. The defendant is fully aware and has acknowledged the claimant's complaint on several occasions. This is a continuing failure by the defendants of their statutory data protection obligations and have already breached two previous subject access requests and in respect of which County Court judgements have been awarded against them. The claimant has been put to great trouble and has suffered enormous distress as a result of the defendant's failure to provide the personal data which they hold about him and his account. In view of the time extensions granted to the defendant, the claimant's distress has continued for a considerable time and accordingly the claimant seeks damages of £610 plus costs.

Something like this?

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Claim submitted for £610 on Tuesday night, just slightly adapting Bank Fodder's excellent suggested wording.

 

'The claimant submitted a valid Data Protection Subject Access Request to the defendant on XXX

Despite being fully aware of this and acknowledging the claimant's complaint on several occasions,the defendant has failed to submit a complete disclosure. The claimant has extended the compliance date twice with no effect. 

This is a continuing failure by the defendants of their statutory data protection obligations, who have already breached two previous subject access requests and as a result have had County Court judgments awarded against them.

As a result of the defendant's failure to completely provide the personal data held about him and his account,despite being granted two time extensions,the claimant has been put to great trouble and has suffered enormous distress which has continued for a considerable time,and according the claimant seeks damages of £610 plus costs.'

 

Letter arrived this morning from Oxford County Court confirming it has been accepted(at least they're nice and speedy) and Virgin have until 5/4 to reply-any bets on whether it will be silence or a random generic letter?

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Well I'm pleased it wasn't me who suggested the split infinitive - 😱

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Amazing.

They seem to pay out without blinking – you don't even get a letter of protest.

Maybe we ought to go into the SAR business. If we sent one every couple of months and a couple of hundred quid a time – it would be some useful spending cash.
 

I hope that the cheque has gone some way to relieving the distress caused by the nondisclosure

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This is starting to become rather tedious-another email from Virgin with my Data Access Request reply. This one contains absolutely nothing new(in fact even less than in the last one)-the same 9 calls as last time,a Mobile Glossary, and two files:Contact History and Webchat Transcripts which were last modified in February and only contain conversations and contact up until the end of January. And that's it-rather pointless them sending it since I have already have all the information supplied here.

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The clock keeps ticking....

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Voicemail from Beverley from the Executive Office this morning. Apparently,their legal team will be reaching out to me soon. Based on previous experience, I won't be sitting hunched over the phone in anticipation...

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